Monday, April 27, 2009

Informal U.S.-Cuba talks planned

Give the man a hand

Obama administration officials plan to meet informally with Cuban officials, The New York Times reports here.
Seizing the momentum from recent meetings with Latin American leaders, the Obama administration is quietly pushing forward with efforts to reopen channels of communication with Cuba, according to White House and State Department officials.
The officials said informal meetings were being planned between the State Department and Cuban diplomats in the United States to determine whether the two governments could open formal talks on a variety of issues, including migration, drug trafficking and other regional security matters.
The paper says the Obama administration is also "looking for ways to open channels for more cultural and academic exchanges between Cuba and the United States."
The eventual goal, a senior administration official told the New York Times, is to see if the two countries could develop a "serious, civil, open relationship."
The Times quoted a State Department official as saying that pressure for a new policy toward Cuba was like a "steamroller."
The official said the Obama administration is "trying to drive it, rather than get run over by it."
Well, if they're so worried about that steamroller, why not do more? Why the baby steps?

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