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US, Cuba announce new round of talks aimed at reopening embassies in both capitals

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HAVANA — The U.S and Cuba say they will hold a new round of talks next Thursday in an attempt to remove barriers to the reopening of embassies in Washington and Havana.

The talks will be held in Washington, the State Department and Cuba's Foreign Ministry announced separately. The two sides have been negotiating for nearly five months over the conditions for re-establishing diplomatic relations under a deal announced by Presidents Raul Castro and Barack Obama on Dec. 17.

The talks have been hung up on disagreements over U.S. diplomats' ability to import uninspected embassy supplies and travel in Cuba without restrictions and meet citizens, including dissidents.

Castro said this week he expects ambassadors to be named after Cuba is taken off the U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism at month's end.

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