Raul Castro demands return of the base at Guantanamo Bay, money before relations between U.S. and Cuba can normalize

A student holds up a photograph of Cuba’s former President Fidel Castro at the memorial of Jose Marti on Revolution Square in Havana, January 28, 2015. REUTERS/Alexandre Meneghini

Cuban President Raul Castro demanded on Wednesday that the United States return the U.S. base at Guantanamo Bay, lift the half-century trade embargo on Cuba and compensate his country for damages before the two nations re-establish normal relations.

Castro told a summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States that Cuba and the U.S. are working toward full diplomatic relations but ‘if these problems aren’t resolved, this diplomatic rapprochement wouldn’t make any sense.’

Castro and U.S. President Barack Obama announced on December 17 that they would move toward renewing full diplomatic relations by reopening embassies in each other’s countries. The two governments held negotiations in Havana last week to discuss both the reopening of embassies and the broader agenda of re-establishing normal relations…

Related, from Daniel Greenfield: New York Times: Cuban Refugees Fleeing Castro Have “Cuban Privilege:” Yes the people fleeing a murderous dictatorship with the clothes on their back are very privileged.