John Kerry on restoring ties between Cuba and the US

John Kerry wants to be the first US Secretary of State to visit Cuba in the last 60 years. In a statement posted on the website of the Department of State, the chief US diplomat welcomed the move towards normalization of relations with the government of the Caribbean nation.

Kerry announced that in January 2015, Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs, Roberta Jacobson, will travel to Cuba heading a US delegation and will participate in the next round of migration talks between the two countries.

The initiative would be part of the “directive of the President to discuss progress towards restoring diplomatic relations.”

“I was a seventeen year old boy watching a black and white TV when I first heard an American President to speak of Cuba as the prisoner island,” said the Secretary of State in his statement, adding that for five and a half decades, the policy against Cuba only served to “isolate the United States, instead of isolating Cuba.”

Kerry predicts the beginning of a long negotiation. “As we did with Vietnam, change our relationship with Cuba will require an investment of time, energy and resources. The steps taken today reflect our firm belief that the risk and cost of trying to change the tide is much less than the risk and cost of being trapped in an ideological cement of our own making. “

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