OFFICIAL VOICE OF THE COMMUNIST PARTY OF CUBA CENTRAL COMMITTEE

1959

April:

Fidel Castro visits the United States on the invitation of the American Society of News Editors, and meets with Vice President Richard Nixon.

December:

President Eisenhower approves a plan of hostile action against Cuba proposed by the State Department and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

1960

March:

The French steamer La Coubre, loaded with ammunition, explodes in Havana Bay leaving 101 dead and more than 200 injured.

June:

Cuba nationalizes oil refineries owned by U.S. companies which refused to process crude from the Soviet Union.

October:

The White House prohibits U.S. exports to Cuba, with the exception of food and medicine.

1961

January:

The U.S. breaks diplomatic relations with Cuba and closes its embassy in Havana.

April:

A counterrevolutionary mercenary brigade of some 1,500 soldiers of Cuban origin, organized and trained by the CIA, invades the country, landing at Playa Girón on the Bay of Pigs, and is defeated within 72 hours.

September:

The U.S. promulgates a Foreign Aid Act, the first specifically directed toward Cuba, which mandates the creation of a government agency to manage all foreign aid, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).

1962

February:

The Trading with the Enemy Act is approved, which in legal terms officially categorized Cuba as an enemy of the United States, thus establishing the basis for invoking the 1949 Export Control Act and imposing of an economic, commercial, and financial blockade on Cuba.

March:

The Kennedy administration approves Operation Mongoose, a plan including a broad range of undercover operations to undermine the Cuban government.

October:

The October Crisis (known in the U.S. as the Cuban Missile Crisis) begins. President Kennedy orders a naval blockade of the island to force the withdrawal of Soviet nuclear missiles from the country.

1966

November:

The U.S. Congress approves the Cuban Adjustment Act which grants Cubans who arrive to U.S. territory special emigration privileges.

1976

October:

A Cubana Airlines plane is downed over the coast of Barbados by a bomb planted aboard, killing all 72 passengers and crew members.

1977

September:

Cuba and the United States agree to open Interests Section in Washington and Havana.

1979

September:

An exports management law is approved, reaffirming the President's executive authority to control exports for reasons related to the national interest, international relations, or shortages of specific products.

1984

December:

Cuba and the United States sign an initial migratory agreement.

1992

September:

The Cuban Democracy Act (Torricelli) is approved, prohibiting commercial relations with Cuba on the part of subsidiaries of U.S. companies in third countries.

1994

September:

Cuba and the U.S. sign another migratory agreement in New York City.

1996

March:

President William Clinton signs the Cuban Liberty and Democratic Solidarity Act (Helms-Burton), approved with the objective of intensifying economic pressure on Cuba, codifying the blockade as law and limiting executive authority to conduct foreign policy.

2003

October:

President Bush creates a committee to direct destabilization efforts in Cuba.

2004

May:

On May 8, the White House announces restrictions on travel by Cuban-Americans to the island, allowing only one trip every three years, and allocates 36 million dollars to finance subversive groups within Cuba.

2009

April:

President Barack Obama rescinds restrictions on travel by Cuban-Americans and those on the sending of remissions to Cuba.

2014

December:On December 17, Presidents Raúl Castro Ruz and Barack Obama announce their intention to begin talks to reestablish diplomatic relations and move toward the normalization of bilateral relations.

2015

January: On the 17th, a first round of conversations takes place in Havana, addressing the reestablishment of diplomatic relations, migratory accords, and other issues of mutual interest.February: A second round of talks is held in Washington.March:Cuba and the U.S. hold a third round of talks in Havana. April:On the 11th, Presidents Raúl Castro Ruz and Barack Obama meet at the 7th Summit of the Americas in Panama.May:A fourth round of talks is held in Washington. The U.S. State Department removes Cuba from its list of state sponsors of terrorism.July:On the first day of the month, Cuba and the U.S. announce the reestablishment of diplomatic relations and the opening of embassies as of July 20.

August:

The U.S. embassy in Havana is opened on August 14, with the attendance of Secretary of State John Kerry, on an official visit to the island.

September:

On the 11th, held in Havana is the first session is of a bilateral commission created to organize and provide continuity to the process of normalizing relations.

New U.S. regulations issued by the Departments of the Treasury and of Commerce modifying some aspects of the blockade enter into effect on the 21st, with limited impact.

On the 26th, the governor of Arkansas, Asa Hutchinson visits Cuba.

The U.S.-Cuba Business Council is established within the U.S. Chamber of Commerce on the 28th.

On the 29th, Presidents Raúl Castro Ruz and Barack Obama meet in New York where both are attending the United Nations General Assembly.

October:

U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker visits Cuba on the 6th.

November:

On the 2nd, Cuba's telecommunications company, ETECSA, and the U.S. company Sprint sign the first cellular phone 'roaming' agreement between the two countries, allowing Sprint customers to use ETECSA's telephone network while in Cuba.

The U.S.-Cuba Business Council meets in Havana on the 3rd.

On the 9th, a joint work group focused on the application and enforcement of law meets on the 9th.

The Bilateral Commission holds its second meeting in Washington.

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack visits Cuba on the 11th.

On the 18th, a memorandum of understanding is signed by the two countries on the conservation of protected marine areas.

A joint statement on the environment is signed on the 24th.

On the 30th, a round of talks on migratory issues takes place in Washington.

December:

Governor Grez Abbott of Texas visits the island on the first day of the month.

An agreement is announced for the reestablishment of direct postal service between the two countries, on the 11th.

December 15, 16 and 17, talks are held in Washington to follow-up on technical issues related to maritime mapping and nautical charts under discussion since February of 2015.

2016

January:

On the 4th, the University of Havana (UH) and Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) sign a framework agreement in the Cuban capital, to promote academic cooperation between the two institutions.

February:

A technical meeting on illegal trafficking in persons and migration fraud, held with the goal of finding ways to increase cooperation in this area, concludes on the 4th in Miami.

On the 16th, a memorandum of understanding on the establishment of regular, commercial flights between Cuba and the United States is signed at the Hotel Nacional.

On the 17th, working groups from Cuba and the U.S. hold a second dialogue to technically evaluate the scope of current blockade regulations and their impact on commercial relations. The meeting was opened by Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker, and Rodrigo Malmierca Díaz , Cuba's minister of Foreign Trade and Investment.

On the 20th, the White House announces that President Obama will visit the island March 21-22. In Havana, the Ministry of Foreign Relations' Director General for the United States, Josefina Vidal, confirms that the President will be received "with full respect and consideration."

A technical meeting between cyber-security authorities from the two countries is held in Havana on the 23rd, to exchange ideas on ways to increase cooperation in this area.

March:

On the 14th, Cuba's telecommunications company ETECSA and the U.S. corporation Verizon conclude negotiations and sign an agreement on a direct connection to allow for voice traffic between the two countries.

On the 15th, the U.S. Departments of the Treasury and of Commerce announce the implementation of another set of modifications to some aspects of the blockade, including permission for individuals to make people-to-people educational trips to Cuba, and an end to restrictions on some Cuban transactions using the U.S. dollar.

The inaugural flight reestablishing direct postal service takes place on the 16th, as part of a pilot plan.