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Timeline: U.S.-Cuba relations
A look at the complicated relationship between the United States and Cuba.
CUBA
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December 31, 2003
January 1, 1959: U.S.-backed dictator Fulgencio Batista flees Cuba as Fidel Castro (R, waving) and his...
Havana, Cuba
-FILE PHOTO 08JAN59- Fidel Castro (R) waves to the people in Havana in this file photo from January .....
January 1, 1959: U.S.-backed dictator Fulgencio Batista flees Cuba as Fidel Castro (R, waving) and his revolutionaries seize control. Two years later, on January 3, 1961, the U.S. breaks off diplomatic relations with Cuba after the nationalization of U.S.-owned properties. REUTERS/Granma/Handout
USA-JFK/
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November 15, 2013
October 1962: The United States discovers Soviet nuclear missiles on Cuba, leading to a showdown with...
Washington, UNITED STATES
File handout image shows former U.S. President Kennedy signing a proclamation at the White House in Washington...
October 1962: The United States discovers Soviet nuclear missiles on Cuba, leading to a showdown with the Soviet Union that almost leads to war. The confrontation ends with the Russians removing the missiles and the United States agreeing never to invade Cuba and, secretly, pulling its missiles from Turkey. Pictured: President John F. Kennedy signs a proclamation for the interdiction of the delivery of offensive weapons to Cuba during the Cuban missile crisis, October 23, 1962. REUTERS/Cecil Stoughton/The White House/John F. Kennedy Presidential Library
CUBA-PERUVIAN-EMBASSY
RTRQ3MC
June 17, 1999
April-October 1980: Cuba allows 125,000 people to travel to the United States from the port of Mariel...
Havana, Cuba
REMAINS OF OLD PERUVIAN EMBASSY IN HAVANA WHERE MARIEL BOATLIFT CRISIS ORIGINATED.
April-October 1980: Cuba allows 125,000 people to travel to the United States from the port of Mariel in what becomes known as the Mariel Boatlift. Pictured: A couple walk past the remains of the old Peruvian Embassy in Havana, where the 1980 Mariel boatlift originated with a rush on the diplomatic building by thousands of would-be Cuban immigrants to the United States. REUTERS/Rafael Perez
ANNIVERSARY-WALL
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November 10, 1989
December 1991: The Soviet Union, Cuba's biggest benefactor, collapses, touching off an economic crisis...
Berlin, Germany - Federal Republic of
EAST GERMANS CLIMB THE BERLIN WALL IN THIS FILE PHOTO.
December 1991: The Soviet Union, Cuba's biggest benefactor, collapses, touching off an economic crisis from which the island has not fully recovered. REUTERS/Stringer
CUBA-SPORT-BASEBALL
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March 28, 1999
March 1999: The Clinton administration approves a two-game exhibition series between the Baltimore Orioles...
Havana, Cuba
CASTRO TALKS WITH ORIOLES ALBERT BELLE.
March 1999: The Clinton administration approves a two-game exhibition series between the Baltimore Orioles and Cuban national baseball team, marking the first time a Major League Baseball team played in Cuba since 1959. Pictured: Fidel Castro talks with Orioles slugger Albert Belle prior to the game in Cuba. REUTERS/Andy Clark
YEAREND
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April 21, 2000
November 1999: Cuban child Elian Gonzalez is rescued from a capsized boat near the Florida coast, as...
Miami, USA
YEAREND PICTURES 2000.
November 1999: Cuban child Elian Gonzalez is rescued from a capsized boat near the Florida coast, as he, his mother and her boyfriend attempted to reach the U.S. A custody battle erupts, pitting Castro's government against the Cuban-American community. The boy's maternal relatives sought to keep him in the U.S., but the boy's Cuban father finally won the legal battle in U.S. courts and took Elian home on June 28, 2000. REUTERS/Alan Diaz/Pool
BUSH
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November 16, 2004
2004: Following George W. Bush's re-election, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice declares Cuba to be...
Washington, UNITED STATES
Rice speaks after being nominated by President Bush.
2004: Following George W. Bush's re-election, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice declares Cuba to be one of the "outposts of tyranny" in the world. Later, Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Affairs John Bolton declares Castro's government as part of America's "axis of evil". REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
CUBA
RTR1GDKQ
August 13, 2006
July 31, 2006: Fidel Castro, seen here being visited by Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, provisionally...
Havana, Cuba
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez visits his Cuban counterpart Fidel Castro in Havana
July 31, 2006: Fidel Castro, seen here being visited by Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, provisionally turns over power to his brother, Raul Castro, after undergoing emergency intestinal surgery. REUTERS/Estudios Revolucion-Granma/Handout
CUBA-CASTRO/
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February 24, 2008
February 24, 2008: The National Assembly elects Raul Castro to formally replace the ailing Fidel. REUTERS/Prensa...
Havana, Cuba
Raul Castro reacts when his name is called out during a meeting of the National Assembly in Havana
February 24, 2008: The National Assembly elects Raul Castro to formally replace the ailing Fidel. REUTERS/Prensa Latina/Pool
MANDELA/
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December 10, 2013
December 10, 2013: Barack Obama and Raul Castro shake hands at a state memorial service for Nelson Mandela....
Johannesburg, South Africa
U.S. President Obama greets Cuban President Castro at the memorial service for Mandela in Johannesburg...
December 10, 2013: Barack Obama and Raul Castro shake hands at a state memorial service for Nelson Mandela. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach
POPE-CUBA/
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September 20, 2015
2013: Cuban and U.S. officials begin secret talks brokered in part by Pope Francis, and hosted in Canada...
Havana, Cuba
Pope Francis and Cuba's President Raul Castro talk outside Revolution Palace in Havana
2013: Cuban and U.S. officials begin secret talks brokered in part by Pope Francis, and hosted in Canada and Vatican City. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
CUBA-USA/
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August 15, 2015
July 1, 2015: Barack Obama announces formal diplomatic relations will resume, with embassies reopening...
Havana, Cuba
Medical student Electo Rossel, 20, wearing a shirt with a picture of U.S. President Obama, listens to...
July 1, 2015: Barack Obama announces formal diplomatic relations will resume, with embassies reopening in Washington and Havana. REUTERS/Alexandre Meneghini
USA-CUBA/
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March 21, 2016
March 21, 2016: Barack Obama makes a historic trip to Cuba, the first visit by a sitting U.S. president...
Havana, Cuba
U.S. President Barack Obama and Cuba's President Raul Castro shake hands in Havana
March 21, 2016: Barack Obama makes a historic trip to Cuba, the first visit by a sitting U.S. president since 1928. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
CUBA-USA/FLIGHTS
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August 31, 2016
August 31, 2016: The first scheduled commercial passenger flight from the United States to Cuba in more...
Santa Clara, Cuba
Ground crew hold U.S. and Cuban flags near a recently landed JetBlue aeroplane at the Abel Santamaria...
August 31, 2016: The first scheduled commercial passenger flight from the United States to Cuba in more than half a century lands. A JetBlue Airways Corp passenger jet arrived from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, in the central Cuban city of Santa Clara. The route may be a commercial challenge, at least initially, but it is the first of a plethora of new flights by various U.S. airlines to destinations on the Communist-ruled island.

REUTERS/Alexandre Meneghini
USA-CUBA/
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June 16, 2017
June 16, 2017: President Donald Trump ordered tighter restrictions on Americans traveling to Cuba and...
Miami, UNITED STATES
U.S. President Trump delivers a speech on US-Cuba relations in Miami
June 16, 2017: President Donald Trump ordered tighter restrictions on Americans traveling to Cuba and a clampdown on U.S. business dealings with the island's military, saying he was canceling former President Barack Obama's "terrible and misguided deal" with Havana from 2014. But Trump was leaving in place many of Obama's changes, including the reopened U.S. embassy in Havana, even as he sought to show he was making good on a campaign promise to take a tougher line against Cuba.

REUTERS/Carlos Barria
USA-CUBA/IMMIGRATION
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January 13, 2017
September 29, 2017: The United States cut its diplomatic presence in Cuba by more than half and warned...
Havana, Cuba
A vintage car passes by in front of the U.S. Embassy in Havana, Cuba
September 29, 2017: The United States cut its diplomatic presence in Cuba by more than half and warned U.S. citizens not to visit because of mysterious "attacks" that caused hearing loss, tinnitus, vertigo, headaches and fatigue in U.S. embassy personnel. Twenty-four government employees and family members displayed symptoms similar to those related to concussion and mild traumatic brain injury, according to the State Department. Cuban officials, who conducted their own investigation, denied any involvement or any knowledge of what was behind it. The administration of President Donald Trump responded by sharply drawing down U.S. embassy staff in Havana and in October 2017 expelled 15 Cuban diplomats.

REUTERS/Alexandre Meneghini
CUBA-USA/
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August 23, 2018
June 4, 2019: The Trump administration imposed heavy new restrictions on U.S. travel to Cuba, including...
Havana, Cuba
People ride in a vintage car next to a cruise ship docked in Havana
June 4, 2019: The Trump administration imposed heavy new restrictions on U.S. travel to Cuba, including a ban on cruises. The State Department said the United States will no longer permit visits to Cuba via passenger and recreational vessels, including cruise ships and yachts, as well as private and corporate aircraft. The country will also no longer allow so-called group people-to-people educational travel, one of the most popular exemptions to the overall ban on U.S. tourism to Cuba. Travel experts said some groups may get around that by instead using one of the 11 other categories still allowed. The United States is the second-largest source of travelers to the island after Canada, with a majority arriving on cruises ships. According to the Cuban government, 257,500 U.S. citizens, not including those of Cuban origin, visited Cuba from January through March, with 55% arriving on cruise ships.

REUTERS/Alexandre Meneghini
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