Cuba and the United States on Tuesday resumed their migration talks after a five-year hiatus, in the UN headquarters in New York.
Cuba reaffirmed its "unequivocal" adherence to the U.S.-Cuba Migration Accords, singed 15 years ago.
Cuban vice foreign minister Dagoberto Rodriguez said it was "a fruitful working session" that will help implement the migration agreements reached by both sides.
U.S. State Department spokesman Ian Kelly said in a statement that the United States reaffirmed its commitment to promote "safe, orderly, and legal migration."
"The United States views these talks as a venue to achieve practical, positive results that contribute to the full implementation of the Accords and to the safety of our citizens," he said.
The migration talks were suspended in 2004 by the U.S. government, citing Cuba's refusal to enter talks on some "important issues." However, Cuba said Washington was only trying to please the ultra right anti-Cuban groups in Miami.
According to Kelly, the talks had a further political meaning. "Engaging in these talks underscores our interest in pursuing constructive discussions with the government of Cuba to advance U.S. interests on issues of mutual concern," he said.
Since President Barack Obama took office in January, the U.S. government has taken some favorable steps on Cuba. In April, Obama eased restrictions on travel and remittances to Cuba by U.S. nationals of Cuban descent.
Cuban leader Raul Castro also expressed interests in holding discussions with the United States on issues of common concern. Cuba has proposed to continue talks on migration with the United States in December in Havana.
(Xinhua News Agency July 16, 2009)