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Cuba, U.S. to resume talks on migration, mail service

  • Story Highlights
  • Cuba accepts U.S. overture to resume talks, officials say; no date set
  • Bush administration suspended immigration talks with Cuba in 2004
  • President Obama has eased U.S. restrictions on family travel, financial remittances
From Elise Labott
CNN State Department producer
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WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Cuba has agreed to resume talks with the United States over migration and mail service between the two countries, two senior State Department officials said.

Currently, mail service between the United States and Cuba goes through third-party countries.

Cuban officials who met with State Department officials Saturday raised the prospect of future talks regarding counter-narcotics, counter-terrorism, and disaster preparedness and response.

The senior State Department sources told CNN that the Cuban government informed the United States on Saturday that it had accepted a recent U.S. overture to restart the negotiations. No date or time has been set for the talks.

"This is a big deal," one senior State Department official said. "We see this as a very positive development."

The move came as Secretary of State Hillary Clinton left for a trip to El Salvador and Honduras.

The U.S. made the overture on May 22 to resume the talks. State Department spokeswoman Heide Bronke-Fulton told CNN, "We intend to use the renewal of talks to reaffirm both sides' commitment to safe, legal, and orderly migration, to review recent trends in illegal Cuban migration to the United States and to improve operational relations with Cuba on migration issues."

The Bush administration suspended the immigration talks with the Cuban government in January 2004.

A resumption of talks would follow President Obama's easing of family travel and financial restrictions between the U.S. and the island nation.

All About CubaHillary ClintonU.S. Department of StateDiplomacy

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