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Travel to Cuba

From lawbrain.com

For most American citizens, Cuba remains the only country in the world their government prohibits them from visiting.


The U.S. ban on visits to Cuba began as a trade embargo.


In 1961, President Kennedy asked Press Secretary Pierre Salinger to get about 1,000 of his favorite Cuban cigars. After Salinger delivered them the next morning, Kennedy signed the decree banning all Cuban products from the United States. Cuban cigars were now illegal in the US. (Since Kennedy had the cigars before he signed the decree, he could lawfully possess them).


In July 1963 Kennedy further tightened the embargo and made most travel to Cuba illegal for U.S. citizens.


U.S. citizens can apply for permission from the State Department to visit Cuba. Among permissible purposes are academic research, humanitarian outreach, official government business and journalism. Other Americans defy the travel ban and enter Cuba from Canada or Mexico. Penalties for visiting Cuba include fines up to $250,000, up to 10 years in prison, and confiscation of property.

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