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Delisted in Havana

Taking Cuba Off the State Sponsors of Terrorism List

Cuban flags fly beside the United States Interests Section in Havana, April 5, 2015. Enrique de la Osa / Reuters

The U.S. State Department's recent recommendation that U.S. President Barack Obama take Cuba off the list of state sponsors of international terrorism removes a major roadblock to the re-establishment of diplomatic relations between Washington and Havana. If Obama acts on the recommendation on the eve of the Seventh Summit of the Americas convening in Panama this Friday, he will significantly strengthen Washington's diplomatic position in Latin America and create a positive atmosphere for his interactions with the hemisphere's other heads of state—including Cuban leader Raúl Castro.

To be sure, a decision to remove Cuba from the terrorist list will not end the domestic debate about whether Cuba belongs on the  list—or about Obama's broader opening to Cuba.  Congress has 45 days to review a president's determination before it goes into effect, and the Obama's conservative critics on the Hill will no doubt try to block Cuba's

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