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Rights issues dog EU-Cuba talks, progress on trade

Rights issues dog -Cuba talks, progress on trade
17 June 2015, 15:44 CET

(BRUSSELS) – The EU and Cuba have made progress on normalising strained
ties but sharp differences over remain a problem and
require more work, EU sources said Wednesday.

The froze relations with Cuba in 2003 after a crackdown
on activists and journalists but opened talks early last year as
Washington warmed to Communist-ruled Havana after more than 50 years of
unrelenting hostility.

A senior EU official said a fourth round of talks in Brussels had made
real progress on trade and overall cooperation but there remained a lot
of work to do on human rights.

“It is no great secret that our views on what represents effective and
accountable governance on how fundamental rights should be interpreted
and applied… diverge,” said the official who asked not to be identified.

“We need to work longer to have a better understanding,” the official added.

At the same time, the official said “we have a near complete agreement
on trade and economic issues; we have a very broad agreement on

The 28-nation EU and Cuba are aiming to sign a political framework for
dialogue and cooperation by the end of 2015.

The Cuban foreign ministry said Tuesday that the Brussels talks were “a
useful exchange on the question of political dialogue, allowing each
side to express their positions and aspirations.”

A fifth round of talks will be held in September in Havana.

Source: Rights issues dog EU-Cuba talks, progress on trade — EU –
European Union business news and information | –

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