Beyoncé and Jay-Z traveled to Cuba last week, but the highly-publicized trip didn’t come without controversy. After being criticized for their visit to the communist country, it has been revealed that they received approval from the U.S. government.
According to Reuters, the superstar couple’s cultural trip was fully licensed by the U.S. Treasury Department.
The U.S. trade embargo against Cuba prevents most Americans from traveling to the island without a license. However, Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s vacation was planned as a “people-to-people” cultural visit and involved no meetings with Cuban officials, or typical tourist activity (i.e. trips to the beach). Even a walk around Havana was led by Miguel Coyula, one of the city’s leading architects.
Two Cuban-American members of Congress from South Florida raised questions about Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s travels, inquiring about their license in a letter to the Treasury Department.
The couple spent their fifth wedding anniversary in Cuba, dining at famous restaurants and visiting local artists and nightclubs. They were met with crowds and paparazzi, who documented their every move.
While an embargo is still in place, President Obama has eased restrictions on travel to Cuba for academic, religious, or cultural programs.