BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: World: Americas
Front Page 
World 
Africa 
Americas 
Asia-Pacific 
Europe 
Middle East 
South Asia 
-------------
From Our Own Correspondent 
-------------
Letter From America 
UK 
UK Politics 
Business 
Sci/Tech 
Health 
Education 
Entertainment 
Talking Point 
In Depth 
AudioVideo 

Sunday, 22 April, 2001, 01:28 GMT 02:28 UK
US ship cancels Cuba visit
Cuban President Fidel Castro
Some believe President Castro may have blocked the visit
The first trip by a United States cargo ship to Cuba in more than 40 years has been cancelled.

The MV Orso was due to arrive in Havana on Saturday, but a spokesman for owners Crowley Liner Service said senior managers had ordered the ship to bypass Cuba and proceed to Mexico.

He said no further details would be available until Monday. The company had planned weekly trips to Havana.

Correspondents say President Fidel Castro may have refused entry to the ship, which is believed to have been carrying humanitarian as well as commercial goods.

Crowley Maritime Corporation - website
A planned timetable is carried on Crowley's website
The US Congress passed a bill last year allowing food and medical exports to Cuba under special licence, but Havana has insisted it will not allow American goods into the country.

There have also been suggestions that Havana may be seeking to avoid an impression that US ships are now in a position to serve Cuba normally.

Unaware of the change of plan, foreign media had camped out from around 0300 local time (0700 GMT) at Havana harbour awaiting the ship's arrival.

Washington imposed economic sanctions on Cuba soon after Castro's 1959 Communist revolution, but there is growing pressure from abroad and from an American farm and business lobby to lift them.

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
BBC RADIO NEWS
BBC ONE TV NEWS
WORLD NEWS SUMMARY
PROGRAMMES GUIDE
See also:

19 Mar 01 | Americas
Cuba issues double trade challenge
27 Apr 00 | Americas
What's life really like in Cuba?
21 Jul 00 | Americas
US moves to lift Cuba sanctions
01 Jan 99 | Americas
Castro: The great survivor
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Americas stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Americas stories