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<meta content="text/html; charset=utf-8" http-equiv="Content-Type"></meta><meta content="Word.Document" name="ProgId"></meta><meta content="Microsoft Word 11" name="Generator"></meta><meta content="Microsoft Word 11" name="Originator"></meta><link href="file:///C:\DOCUME~1\U0110531\LOCALS~1\Temp\msohtml1\01\clip_filelist.xml" rel="File-List"></link><o:smarttagtype name="country-region" namespaceuri="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags"></o:smarttagtype><o:smarttagtype name="place" namespaceuri="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags"></o:smarttagtype><style><!-- /* Font Definitions */ @font-face {font-family:Calibri; panose-1:2 15 5 2 2 2 4 3 2 4; mso-font-charset:0; mso-generic-font-family:swiss; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:-1610611985 1073750139 0 0 159 0;} /* Style Definitions */ p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal {mso-style-parent:""; margin-top:0in; margin-right:0in; margin-bottom:10.0pt; margin-left:0in; line-height:115%; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:11.0pt; font-family:Calibri; mso-fareast-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman";} @page Section1 {size:8.5in 11.0in; margin:1.0in 1.0in 1.0in 1.0in; mso-header-margin:.5in; mso-footer-margin:.5in; mso-paper-source:0;} div.Section1 {page:Section1;} --> </style> Travel to <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Cuba</st1:place></st1:country-region><o:p></o:p>

For most American citizens, <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Cuba</st1:place></st1:country-region> remains the only country in the world their government prohibits them from visiting.<o:p></o:p>

The U.S. ban on visits to <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Cuba</st1:place></st1:country-region> 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 <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">United States</st1:place></st1:country-region>. Cuban cigars were now illegal in the <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">US</st1:place></st1:country-region>. (Since Kennedy had the cigars before he signed the decree, he could lawfully possess them).<o:p></o:p>

In July 1963 Kennedy further tightened the embargo and made most travel to <st1:country-region w:st="on">Cuba</st1:country-region> illegal for <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">U.S.</st1:place></st1:country-region> citizens. <o:p></o:p>

<st1:country-region w:st="on">U.S.</st1:country-region> citizens can apply for permission from the State Department to visit <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Cuba</st1:place></st1:country-region>. Among permissible purposes are academic research, humanitarian outreach, official government business and journalism. Other Americans defy the travel ban and enter <st1:country-region w:st="on">Cuba</st1:country-region> from <st1:country-region w:st="on">Canada</st1:country-region> or <st1:country-region w:st="on"><st1:place w:st="on">Mexico</st1:place></st1:country-region>. Penalties for visiting Cuba include fines up to $250,000, up to 10 years in prison, and confiscation of property.<o:p></o:p>

<o:p> </o:p>
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