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US Withdraws Obama-era Olive Branch, Bans All Flights to Cuba Except Havana

The Transportation Department will announce that JetBlue and American Airlines flights to Santa Clara in central Cuba and Holguin and Camaguey in the island's east will be banned starting in December.

Associated Press

Updated:October 26, 2019, 7:38 AM IST
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US Withdraws Obama-era Olive Branch, Bans All Flights to Cuba Except Havana
Image for representation. (Reuters)

Havana: Two people briefed on the matter say the Trump administration is banning US flights to all Cuban cities but Havana in the latest move to roll back Obama-era easing of relations.

The people say the Transportation Department will announce that JetBlue and American Airlines flights to Santa Clara in central Cuba and Holguin and Camaguey in the island's east will be banned starting in December. Flights to Havana account for the great majority of US flights to Cuba and will remain legal.

The stated reason for the move is to prevent tourism to Cuba, which is banned by US law. But it is not clear how many people take the flights for tourism purposes. Many are used by Cuban-Americans visiting relatives in cities far from Havana by road.

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