Officials allow Associated Press to reopen news bureau
CUBA–Cuban officials in mid-November approved the reopening of an Associated Press news bureau in Havana, after an absence of more than 28 years.
The approval from the Cuban Foreign Ministry comes after the Clinton administration gave the go-ahead for 10 news organizations to apply for permission to operate bureaus in Cuba. These organizations included ABC, CBS, The Miami Herald, AP and CNN, which opened its bureau in mid-March 1997, after receiving permission from officials from both countries.
The renewal of American news bureaus in Cuba is an exception to the U.S. trade embargo, but, according to statements made by former White House spokesman Mike McCurry, the move was made in order to “bring greater public exposure to those who are advocating a democratic change” in the communist country governed by leader Fidel Castro.
According to the AP, it was forced to close its Havana bureau in 1969 after its last permanent correspondent was expelled from the country.
The news cooperative said it plans to appoint a bureau chief immediately and hopes to have the office open by late November or early December.