The US is set to open talks to restore diplomatic relations with Cuba after a 50-year stalemate, President Obama said on Wednesday. The announcement came shortly after the release of American aid worker Alan Gross, who was imprisoned in Cuba for more than five years.
The major policy shift is the endpoint of more than a year and a half of secret negotiations between the US and the Cuban government. Under the proposal, the US plans to re-open its embassy in Havana and relax restrictions on travel and commerce.
"We will end an outdated approach that has failed to advance our interests," Obama said. "Neither the American nor the Cuban people are well-served by a rigid policy that is rooted in events that took place before most of us were born."
How is the move being received politically? What is the impact on Cuba and the US?
Jonathan Allen, White House reporter and DC Bureau Chief for Bloomberg News who's been following the story. He tweets at @jonallendc
Andy Gomez, senior policy advisor for the law and public policy firm, Poblete Tamargo in Miami. He is also a senior fellow and special assistant to the President for International Affairs at the Institute for Cuban and Cuban-American Studies at the University of Miami
Michael Voss, Cuba Correspondent for CCTV News. He's based in Havana