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Russia Says U.S. Should Drop Sanctions Against Cuba, 'Other Countries'

Russia says it hopes the United States will abandon sanctions against Cuba and "other countries" in the wake of President Barack Obama's sharp shift in policy toward the communist country.

In a statement on December 17, after U.S. President Barack Obama announced the United States would reestablish diplomatic relations with Cuba, the Russian Foreign Ministry expressed hope that would be followed by "the complete removal of the American trade embargo in place against the island since 1961."

The ministry seized on Obama's remark that isolating Cuba for decades has "not worked" to suggest that Russia's longtime criticism of the U.S. use of punitive sanctions -- including those imposed on Russia this year over its interference in Ukraine -- has been on the mark.

"The U.S. president admitted that many years of attempting to isolate Cuba have not produced a result," the ministry said. "One is left to hope that Washington will quickly realize that similar sanctions pressure on other countries has no prospects."

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