Transfer will deal with a greater than four-year backlog of requests for immigration visas by Cubans with household within the US.
The USA embassy in Cuba has introduced it’s going to enhance its staffing and resume some visa processing, a number of years after the administration of former President Donald Trump slashed personnel numbers following a spate of unexplained well being incidents.
The highest US diplomat in Havana, Timothy Zuniga-Brown, made the announcement at a information convention on Thursday.
The embassy “will start the restricted resumption of some immigrant visa companies, as a part of a gradual enlargement of the embassy’s features”, Zuniga-Brown mentioned.
The deployment of extra consular officers to Havana is a results of President Joe Biden’s ongoing review of Cuba policy. It would start to handle a greater than four-year backlog of requests for immigration visas by Cubans with household within the US.
It additionally marks a uncommon step by the Biden administration to ease restrictions on Cuba that have been imposed by Trump, who rolled again the historic rapprochement overseen by his Democratic predecessor, Barack Obama.
The scaled-back operations delivered a significant blow for Cubans wishing to to migrate to the US because it compelled most individuals to journey to Georgetown, Guyana for interviews.
Amid the worst financial disaster in Cuba in 30 years as a result of coronavirus pandemic, many Cubans hoping to to migrate to the US have both taken boats headed to Florida’s coast or trekked via Central America in an try to cross via the US-Mexico border.
However the US has despatched the bulk again to Cuba underneath a pandemic-era health order.
A US Embassy assertion issued after Zuniga-Brown’s announcement careworn a “restricted resumption of some immigrant visa companies” in Havana.
It added that Cuban immigrant visas will nonetheless be processed primarily on the US embassy in Guyana, whereas Havana will give attention to different consular companies and “restricted emergency non-immigrant visa processing”.
Trump sharply scaled again embassy employees within the Cuban capital in 2017 after some grew to become ailing with what has turn into referred to as “Havana syndrome“.
The unexplained diseases first affected US workers in Havana however later cropped up in different elements of the world.
The Cuban authorities has lengthy denied any involvement or data of the incidents.
Forward of the US announcement on Thursday, the Cuban authorities issued a press release slamming the Trump-era coverage as unjustified and dangerous to US-Cuba ties.
“Over 5 years, that call has had very damaging penalties for your entire Cuban inhabitants, in addition to for Individuals,” the assertion mentioned.