The Miami Herald
September 5, 2001

 Honduras moves toward ties with Cuba

 TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras -- (AP) -- Honduras will open an interests section in Cuba next week, seeking to reestablish bilateral relations that broke off 40 years ago, the foreign secretary said Tuesday.

 "The opening of the Cuba office is undoubtedly a step toward re-establishing diplomatic relations between the two countries,'' said Foreign Minister Roberto Flores.

 The office will open on Sept. 15 and will be headed by Reyieri David Amador, a career diplomat who has worked in the Honduran embassies in Nicaragua and Costa Rica.

 Honduras has not had diplomatic relations with Cuba since April 1961, when the Organization of American States expelled the communist island from its ranks.

 Cuba opened an interests section in the Honduran capital, Tegucigalpa, in 1999.

 Honduras and El Salvador are the only two Latin American nations that don't have diplomatic relations with Cuba.

 More than 150 Cuban doctors and nurses have been in Honduras since October 1998, when Hurricane Mitch pounded the country, killing thousands and causing billions of dollars in damage.