Fidel Castro welcomes new US travel rules for Cuba

Former Cuban leader Fidel Castro has given a cautious welcome to the new travel rules for US citizens, saying they are positive but insufficient.

US President Barack Obama announced on Monday that restrictions on travel and money transfers to Cuba would be lifted for Americans with relatives in the Caribbean country.

In an article published on the government website on Tuesday, the longtime communist leader said the decision was “positive, but only a minimal part” of what needs to be done. “Many other measures are needed,” he said.

Castro, 82, also criticized the failure of the Obama administration to address the half-century blockade of Cuba.

“Of the blockade, which is the cruelest of measures, not a word was uttered,” he wrote.

The main focus of the article, the latest of several written by Castro in recent days, was on criticism of the Washington-based Organization of American States (OAS).

He said Cuba would never join the organization, which has “a history that collects all the trash of 60 years of betrayal of the people of Latin America,” and accused it of causing the deaths of “hundreds of thousands of people” through its aggressive policies.

His comments followed calls from many Latin American countries, including Brazil, for Cuba to be reinstated in the OAS.

The OAS “has not provided a single service to our peoples; it is the incarnation of betrayal,” Casro wrote.

Castro’s younger brother Raul officially became Cuba’s president in February 2008, after Fidel ceded power in July 2006 following intestinal surgery.

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