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U.S.-Cuba Tensions Ramp Up
North Dakota Ag Connection - 01/15/2021

Earlier this week, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that the United States was moving Cuba back to its list of state sponsors of terrorism, firmly shutting the door on a brief detente between the two countries.

After decades-long tensions and an aggressive embargo that prevented most travel and trade between them, Cuba and the U.S. started slowly resolving their differences in the late 2000s. In 2015, the Obama administration removed Cuba from its list of state sponsors of terrorism, allowing diplomatic relations and some amounts of tourism and trade to resume.

National Farmers Union (NFU), which supports fair trade relations with Cuba, was largely supportive of these efforts, saying it would remove "the barriers and restrictions that have failed American agriculture and the Cuban people for over 50 years."

However, most of that progress has been undone since then. In 2017, President Donald Trump again tightened restrictions on the country, to NFU's disappointment.

This week's decision will impose new sanctions on Cuba and likely move the nation even further away from a functional relationship with the U.S.

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