The regime in Cuba has agreed to the biggest release of political prisoners seen on the island nation in decades in a deal struck with the country's Catholic leader, Cardinal Jaime Ortega, church officials said last night.
Under a deal reportedly struck by Cuban leader Raul Castro and Cardinal Ortega, some 52 political prisoners will be released and thereafter leave the country for exile in Spain. Also at the meeting were the Spanish Foreign Minister, Miguel Angel Moratinos, and his Cuban counterpart, Bruno Rodriguez. The first five prisoners were reportedly set to be released last night, with the remainder expected to be freed over the coming weeks. Pressure on Havana to release the prisoners has been growing since the death of a prominent political dissident in February after a hunger strike to protest his continuing incarceration.
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