Cuba Looks More to Russia as the Prospects for Better U.S. Ties Fade Under Trump

Cuba Looks More to Russia as the Prospects for Better U.S. Ties Fade Under Trump
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Cuban President Raul Castro embrace during a meeting in Moscow, May 7, 2015 (Pool photo by Anatoly Maltsev via AP).

In 2017, as the Trump administration turned its back on U.S. rapprochement with Cuba, the island deepened its relations with Russia, its longtime backer during the Cold War. Russian exports to Cuba were up 81 percent in the first nine months of 2017, and a possible agreement with Russian oil giant Rosneft may pave the way for Russia to supplant Venezuela as Cuba’s biggest energy supplier. In an email interview, William M. LeoGrande, a professor of government at American University in Washington D.C. and an expert on Latin American affairs, discusses renewed Cuba-Russia ties and the opportunities and obstacles ahead […]

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