Magazine article Editor & Publisher

Trib Cuba Bureau?

Magazine article Editor & Publisher

Trib Cuba Bureau?

Article excerpt

A seven-hour conversation with the loquacious Cuban President Fidel Castro usually works out to six-plus hours of listening and a few minutes of talking. But Illinois Gov. George Ryan says he managed get a word in edgeways on behalf of the island's dissidents, a Cuban boy who needs American care for potentially fatal liver disease, and the Chicago Tribune's long-standing request to open a Havana news bureau.

In a just-released draft report on his trip to Cuba in November, Ryan wrote that Castro said he would -consider the request. The paper has been talking with Cuban officials about a bureau since 1991. Earlier this year, a delegation of Tribune Co. officials traveled to Cuba to make the case, said George de Lama, Tribune assistant managing editor-national/foreign news. CNN and The Associated Press are the only two U.S. news organizations with permanent bureaus on the island.

During Ryan's trip, Castro also got a hint of what he might expect from a permanent Tribune presence, and the Tribune learned how tough an interview Fidel can be. …

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