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The new that US President Barack Obama had loosened restrictions on Cuban family travel and remittances elicited cheers from Cubans in Miami.

Under the Bush administration rules, Cuban-Americans were eligible to visit their relatives only every three years and send up to $300 to every three months.

Yesterday's decisions eliminated those limits. The White House said Monday's move was intended to encourage expanding democratic and political rights in Cuba and called on Havana to respond in kind to help ease decades of fierce antipathy.

The White House called on Cuba to reduce charges it levies on money transfers to family members. An estimated 1.5 million US residents have relatives in Cuba.


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