They are the first talks since U.S. President Barack Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro announced on Dec. 17 they would resume diplomatic ties and swap prisoners in a historic shift after five decades of hostilities.

The Cuban official said it was “unfair” to put Cuba on the U.S. State Department’s list, which also includes Iran, Syria and Sudan.

While saying removal from the list was not necessarily a condition for restoring ties, the official said the Cubans would press the issue with the U.S. delegation.