Top US official meets dissidents in Cuba

Cuba's Gustavo Machin, talks to the press during the second day of closed-door talks between Cuba and the United StatesThe highest-ranking US official to visit Cuba in 35 years met with leading dissidents on Friday, but one prominent opposition figure stayed out amid differences over Washington’s rapprochement with Havana. The Cuban government criticized the meeting between Roberta Jacobson, the State Department’s top official for Latin America, and regime critics but indicated that it would not derail negotiations to normalize ties. Berta Soler, the head of the Ladies in White group of spouses of political prisoners, turned down the invitation to attend the breakfast meeting over eggs and bacon with Jacobson. “This question of whether or not we welcome this dialogue between the US and Cuban government is secondary,” Jose Daniel Ferrer, the leader of a dissident group in western Cuba, told reporters.