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Fourth US-Cuba Bilateral Commission Meeting Set for September

© REUTERS / Enrique De La OsaUS and Cuban flags are seen on the balcony of a restaurant in downtown Havana, Cuba March 19, 2016.
US and Cuban flags are seen on the balcony of a restaurant in downtown Havana, Cuba March 19, 2016. - Sputnik International
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The Cuban Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a press release that the next meeting of the Cuba-US Bilateral Commission to review progress in restoration of ties between the two countries will take place in September.

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The next meeting of the Cuba-US Bilateral Commission to review progress in restoration of ties between the two countries will take place in September in Washington, DC, the Cuban Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a press release.

"Both delegations agreed to hold the fourth meeting of the Bilateral Commission in September, 2016, in Washington DC," the release stated on Monday.

Earlier in the day, Cuban and US authorities concluded the third meeting of the Commission in Havana.

US Ambassador Kristie Kenney lead the US delegation and Cuban Foreign Ministry Director General for US Affairs Josefina Vidal represented the Cuban side.

Cuban and US flags are seen on the balcony of a restaurant in downtown Havana, Cuba March 19, 2016. - Sputnik International
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The Cuban Foreign Ministry said both parties have outlined steps that should be taken in upcoming months to further improve relations between the neighboring countries.

"Both delegations expressed their intention to sign new agreements to cooperate in areas such as health, agriculture, meteorology, seismology, protected land areas, oil spill response, the combat of drug-trafficking and search and rescue operations, among others," the release noted.

At the same time, the Cuban delegation stressed the need for the United States to lift its trade embargo to allow the Caribbean island nation develop its economy.

In December 2014, President Barack Obama announced the United States would begin to normalize relations with Cuba after more than 50 years of non-engagement and hostilities. While the two countries reopened embassies in their respective capitals in July 2015, the congressionally-mandated US trade embargo continues to remain in effect.

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