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Obama ends "wet foot, dry foot" policy and medical parole program for Cubans

"Reaction to the announcement in Havana was muted Thursday afternoon.

"'This was bound to happen at some point,' said taxi driver Guillermo Britos, 35. 'It could impose a more normal dynamic on emigration, so that not so many people die at sea, but it could also take an escape valve away from the government, which was getting hard currency from the emigrants.'

"Anti-Castro Cubans in Miami were mixed in their responses, with some expressing anger at Obama for what they called another betrayal of ordinary Cubans. Others said they thought the measure would increase pressure for change in Cuba.

"'People who can't leave, they could create internal problems for the regime,' said Jorge Gutierrez, an 80-year-old veteran of the Bay of Pigs invasion. But he added, 'From the humanitarian point of view, it's taking away the possibility of a better future from the people who are struggling in Cuba.'

"Rep. Illeana Ros-Lehtinen, a Florida Republican who emigrated from Cuba as a child, decried the elimination of the medical parole programs, calling it a 'foolhardy concession to a regime that sends its doctors to foreign nations in a modern-day indentured servitude.'"

Full AP coverage at: http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_OBAMA_CUBA?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2017-01-12-16-50-37.

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