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Barack Obama
Barack Obama/ Sketch By The Economist

Barack Obama Makes History As first US president to Visit Cuba in 88 Years

President Barack Obama is in Cuba for a historic three-day visit to the island and talks with its communist leader.

He is the first sitting US president to visit since the 1959 revolution, which heralded decades of hostility between the two countries.

Speaking at the reopened US embassy in Havana, he called the visit “historic”.

Mr Obama will meet President Raul Castro, but not retired revolutionary leader Fidel Castro, and the pair will discuss trade and political reform.

‘Brighter future’

President Obama’s visit is the high point of a recent easing of ties between the US and Cuba, which included the re-establishment of diplomatic missions last year.

Unsurprisingly, his first stop was the newly re-opened embassy.

Traveling with the president are first lady Michelle Obama, their daughters, Malia and Sasha, and Mrs. Obama’s mother, Marian Robinson. Flying with the Obamas on Air Force One were Rachel and Sharon Robinson, the widow and daughter of the late baseball legend Jackie Robinson; House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, California Democrat; Democratic Sens. Patrick J. Leahy of Vermont and Richard J. Durbin of Illinois; and Sen. Jeff Flake, Arizona Republican.