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News > Cuba

Cuba Rejects Changes to US Travel Visa as Rights Violation

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    The changes only "imposes high economic costs" to families, the ministry said. | Photo: EFE

Published 16 March 2019

The changes to the B2 Visa were put into effective as of Jan. 18, limiting travel time within the U.S. from five years to three months.

The Cuban Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Minrez) is rejecting the ‘unfair’ adjustments made to B2 Visas, which decrease the length of time allotted to Cuban visitors traveling in the U.S. from five years to three months.

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The changes to the B2 travel visa were put into effective as of Jan. 18 and, in a statement, the ministry said citizens are faced with numerous obstacles just to visit the northern nation for familial visits and business trips.

Minrex accused Washington of making the travel visa the latest dig at the Caribbean nation, after closing the American Consulate on the island. Consequently, Cubans are forced to travel to a third country to access these international services or to review the status on said travel visas "without guarantee.”

"Cuba offers all the facilities for US citizens, from any country in the world, to obtain a visa that is issued at the time," the ministry said, noting that the changes only "imposes high economic costs to family travel and exchange in multiple locations."

Recent adjustments to U.S. travel visas violates the rights of Cubans and fails to meet the time period offered with the B2 visa made available to U.S. citizens travelling to Cuba, per the Migratory Agreements, the ministry went on. Additionally, the Trump Administration failed to meet the minimum 20,000 visa requirement listed in the bilateral travel concord.

"If the United States really wants to apply reciprocity, it should immediately open its Consulate in Havana, resume the process of granting visas that it arbitrarily and unjustly interrupted more than a year ago and eliminate the prohibition for US citizens to travel freely. to Cuba,” Minrex said, adding that Havana will continue to guarantee “the growing flow of travelers in both directions in a regular, orderly and safe manner."

From Twitter, Foreign Minister Bruno Eduardo Rodríguez Parrilla also condemned the new visa limits, writing, “I reject the U.S. decision to limit the time validity of Cubans’ B2 visa from 5 years to 3 months per a single entry which constitutes an additional obstacle for Cuban citizens to exercise of the right to visit their relatives in that country. #Cuba.”

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