American President Barack Obama and Cuban leader Raul Castro announced today (December 17, 2014) that the U.S. and Communist Cuba will soon re-establish diplomatic relations. They decided to make the announcement on December 17th, the Pope's 78th birthday, according to the Rome Reports website.
Through a statement, the Vatican announced that in the last few months, Pope Francis had written letters to both Obama and Castro, inviting them to deal with the case of some prisoners. He also called for a new phase in the relationship between both countries.
The statement added that back in the month of October, an American and Cuban delegation met secretly in the Vatican to discuss how they could move forward.
Despite Communist Cuba's known resistance towards religion, the Holy See never broke diplomatic ties with the island. The U.S. ended diplomatic relations with Cuba in 1961, after Fidel Castro seized control of the nation and set up a communist dictatorship.