Raul Castro Warns U.S. Against Meddling in Cuba’s Affairs

SAN JOSE (Reuters) -

Cuba will not accept any interference from the United States, President Raul Castro said on Wednesday, warning that meddling in its internal affairs would make rapprochement between the two countries “meaningless.”

His comments came after U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Roberta Jacobson, the highest-ranking U.S. government official to visit the island in nearly 40 years, last week met with dissidents a day after talks with Cuban government officials.

“Everything appears to indicate that the aim is to foment an artificial political opposition via economic, political and communicational means,” Castro told a summit in Costa Rica.

“If these problems are not resolved, this diplomatic rapprochement between Cuba and the United States would be meaningless,” he said.

Obama needs approval from the Republican-controlled Congress to completely normalize relations with Cuba, and Republicans such as Florida Senator Marco Rubio have opposed engagement as long as Cuba maintains a one-party state, represses dissidents and controls the media.