In pictures:
The US and Cuba's divided half-century



  In pictures: The US and Cuba's divided half-century

1959

Fidel Castro leads the Cuban revolution, ousting US-backed dictator Fulgencio Batista. Castro meets US Vice President Richard Nixon on an unofficial visit to Washington. (©Library of Congress)

1961

Washington and Havana cut off diplomatic ties after increasingly strained political and commercial relations. Cuba thwarts the so-called Bay of Pigs invasion launched by anti-Castro forces trained by the CIA.(©JFK Presidential Library)

1962

US Congress imposes a commercial embargo on Cuba, while the missile crisis brings Cold War enemies to the brink of war.(©National Security Archives)

1977

Under the leadership of president Jimmy Carter, the United States and Cuba establish the so-called interests sections.(©Carter Presidential Library)

1980

In what became known as the Mariel boatlift, around 125,000 Cubans, many of them released convicts, flee to the US when Castro temporarily lifts travel restrictions.(©US Coast Guard)

2000

Miami-based exiles mount a campaign to keep Cuban child Elian Gonzalez in the US after he is rescued from a capsized boat off the coast of Florida. The boy eventually returns to his father in Cuba.(©AFP)

2006

Fidel Castro transfers power to his brother Raul, ushering in an era of limited reforms on the island. During Fidel Castro’s time in power 10 US presidents pass through the White House.(©AFP)

2014

President Barack Obama and Raul Castro announce the United States and Cuba will normalise diplomatic ties. The two leaders shake hands at a historic meeting at the Summit of the Americas in Panama in 2015.(©AFP)

2016

Raul Castro welcomes Barack Obama to Cuba (20th March, 2016). Obama was the first US president to visit the island in 88 years, an historic step towards normalising diplomatic and economic ties. However, US Congress opposed ending the 54-year-old trade embargo. (©AFP)