Print this trip dossier
Cookies

At Journey Latin America we use cookies to give you the best experience on our website. By continuing to browse, you accept that you are happy to receive all cookies on our website.
Find out more


April 10th, 2015

A Historic Handshake...

Mary Anne

By Mary Anne Nelson
Travel Consultants


Today is the 7th Summit of the Americas and rumours are rife as to whether Barack Obama and Raul Castro will shake hands in Panama City.

Whether the ‘action’ will take place on 10-11 April is uncertain - and if it does it will certainly be a historic one given that the last time a US President and his Cuban opposite number met was over 60 years ago. So far, although no official bilateral meetings have been scheduled it is expected that top Cuban and American officials will hold talks, building on months of behind-the-scenes diplomatic negotiations, we can certainly guarantee that, bar some unforeseen dramatic event, both Obama and Castro will be at the summit, along with the 19 other continental leaders. 

Cuba’s attendance is, in itself, already a historic event. This is the first summit that the country has been invited to attend since it was expelled – at the behest of the United States – from the Organisation of American States in 1962. Recent attempts from other participant countries to invite Cuba to previous summits has also been barred by the US, so Castro’s presence in Panama City this time can almost be seen as the ending of almost five decades of Cuba’s official isolation.

There is still, however, a tricky point to be addressed... for 33 years, Cuba has been on the U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism and although three high-level negotiating sessions have been held since both countries announced the thawing of relations back on December 17, Havana has balked at moving forward on reopening embassies until it is taken off the list. Thus this summit can be the chance to eliminate this stalemate. Obama ordered a review soon after the announcement was made and White House officials hinted at an imminent decision on whether to remove Cuba from this list. This move will certainly open the possibilities for the U.S.to use the summit to clear this point and thus pave the way for the reopening of an embassy in Havana.

Whether or not we see any change in the terrorism designation, the summit in Panama City will offer a monumental stage to witness history in the making.

Want to holiday like a world leader in Panama or get to Cuba before it's too late? Give us a ring and speak to one of our experts.

Post a comment

Upcoming Events

See full Event Listing

Other holidays you may be interested in

Iguassu Falls

Sandpiper: Atlantic to Pacific in style

Group tour

18 days from £5,225pp

Rhythms of Rio

Honeymoon in Brazil: Rhythms of Rio, Salvador and the Iguazu Falls

Private journey

15 days from £4,641pp

Machu Picchu

Luxury Peru and Galapagos: Machu Picchu and the Enchanted Islands

Private journey

15 days from £8,216pp

Torres del Paine National Park Chile

Nandu: Peaks and plains of Patagonia

Group tour

21 days from £3,631pp

Other articles you may like

Browse our inspiration area of the site. It's packed with insider travel tips, Top5s, competitions, events, recipes and holiday ideas for Central and South America sure to whet your travel appetite.

Close

Sign up to our newsletter

Sign up to our twice monthly newsletter and be the first to know about our latest news, offer and competitions.

Sign up with...

Your email

Or...

Using a social account is fast and means you don't need to remember a password. We never share your data either - see our terms & conditions

Remember, you can unsubscribe at any time.

To see how we take care of your data please review our Privacy Policy

Thanks for subscribing – we’ll be in touch!

You are not subscribed. Some error happened.

Share this Page

Social share page will open in new window

Page Full Path: /sitecore/content/JLA/Home/travel-inspiration/history-and-culture/a-historic-handshake

Page ID: {BEA579F9-3764-4EC9-AEC4-9C12B0282BF1}

Page Name: a-historic-handshake

Page Display Name: A Historic Handshake...

Page Template Name: T031-PapagaioBlogPost

Page Template ID: {ECC6A232-9784-4CC7-BA26-18421546B8F5}

Parent ID: {D87BECEB-1D0E-4228-B662-3A524B60DAA0}

Parent Name: history-and-culture

Parent Display Name: History & Culture

Parent Template Name: T029-PapagaioCategoryListing

Parent Template ID: {4D163066-ED7E-48E6-AF31-34B6C47536CD}