Fidel Castro
Sven Creutzmann/Mambo Photo—Getty Images
August 14, 2015 8:13 AM EDT

It’s not exactly an olive branch.

In an essay published in local media, Fidel Castro celebrated his 89th birthday Thursday by arguing that the United States owes Cuba “many millions of dollars” because of the trade embargo Congress imposed on the island nation back in 1963, according to a report in L’Agence France-Presse

The essay, which was published Thursday, appeared just one day before John Kerry was set to appear at a ceremonial raising of the stars and stripes at the U.S. embassy in Havana. The event is meant to celebrate the official opening up of Cuba-U.S. relations last month.

Despite the thawing of Cuba-U.S. relations, the trade embargo remains in place, and can only be removed by an act of Congress.

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