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April 8, 2015

How Soon Will Cuba Lose Its State Sponsor of Terrorism Label?

Yes, it seems reasonable for the U.S. State Department to reconsider Cuba’s designation as a state sponsor of terrorism. But the Obama administration is rushing into this. Last month, Barack Obama announced he wanted a U.S. embassy in Havana before he comes face to face with Raul Castro at the Panama Summit of the Americas this weekend. That goal fell to the wayside, but State is wrapping up a study on whether or not Cuba should be removed from the list that includes countries like Syria and Iran. If the island nation is scrubbed from the list, it is the first step in lifting sanctions and resuming trade. Recently, Cuba has moved away from aiding and abetting socialist terror groups targeting countries like Spain and Colombia, according to a 2013 State Department report on state sponsors of terrorism. However, there’s still some friction between the States and Cuba. “The Cuban government continued to harbor fugitives wanted in the United States,” the report said. “The Cuban government also provided support such as housing, food ration books, and medical care for these individuals.” Fugitives are different than individuals who use terror as leverage. Besides, not so long ago, George W. Bush declared that North Korea was no longer a state sponsor of terrorism – something the U.S. should probably reconsider, given the country’s nuclear breakout in 2009. More…

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