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The U.S. Treasury Department has confirmed that Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s trip to Cuba was approved. The couple came under speculation and scrutiny when pictures of the two, in Cuba, popped up all over the worldwide web. Many captions read that the couple was there celebrating their anniversary. When republican representatives got a wind of the couple’s alleged celebration, they immediately wanted them investigated. While there the couple was praised by locals. At one point, Beyoncé waved to crowds of fans as she dined with her husband.
In a letter written on Tuesday, to representatives, Assistant Treasury Secretary, Alastair Fitzpayne, said that the royal couple of hip-hop went to Cuba with an authorized group by the Office of Foreign Assets. Fitzpayne wrote, “It is our understanding that the travelers in question traveled to Cuba pursuant to an educational exchange trip organized by a group authorized by (the Office of Foreign Assets Control) to sponsor and organize programs to promote people-to-people contact in Cuba.” The letter goes on to say, “OFAC’s regulations and guidelines require that such trips involve a full-time schedule of educational exchange activities that result in meaningful interaction between the U.S. travelers and individuals of Cuba.” Visitors are allowed to “engage in non-educational activities off-hours.”
Under federal law, U.S. citizens are not allowed to travel to Cuba just for vacation purposes. The trip has to be approved by the Treasury Department. In order to travel to Cuba, many have obtained approval for academic, religious, journalistic or cultural purposes. The people to people licenses were reinstated under the Obama administration. However it is no secret that upon entering the country travelers’ passports have been known to go unstamped.
Both Jay-Z and Beyoncé are revving for mega tours, slated to begin this summer. Beyoncé will be embarking on her solo tour, Mrs. Carter World Tour and Jay-Z will join Justin Timberlake’s Suit and Tie tour. Just recently Jay-Z started his own sport’s agency and began divesting his shares of the Nets empire.
Asa Lovechild is an accomplished actress and singer out of New York City and a supporter of One Billion Rising