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Senator Says US Havana Embassy Opening 'Close'

  • VOA News

Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz, shakes hands with Cuba's First Vice President Miguel Diaz-Canel, at Revolution Palace, in Havana, Cuba, June 13, 2015.

Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz, shakes hands with Cuba's First Vice President Miguel Diaz-Canel, at Revolution Palace, in Havana, Cuba, June 13, 2015.

Three U.S. Republican senators met with senior Cuban officials Saturday in Havana, with one lawmaker saying the opening of a U.S. embassy on the island is "close."

Senators Jeff Flake, Susan Collins and Pat Roberts comprise one of several Congressional delegations to Cuba since the December announcement by leaders in Washington and Havana to restore diplomatic relations.

"We [U.S. delegation and Cuban officials] talked about U.S.-Cuba relations, so just a continuation of the meetings we have had before and will continue to have. We are very excited about the new prospects for full diplomatic relations, and it looks like we're close," Flake said, adding that no date is set for the embassy's opening.

Cuba's First Vice President Miguel Diaz-Canel, Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez, and negotiations chief Josefina Vidal were among the officials who met with the senators.

Flake is championing the Freedom to Travel to Cuba Act to his colleagues on Capitol Hill, in an attempt to end travel restrictions on U.S. citizens to the island.

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