Monday, July 12, 2010
Last week, the major news outlets reported that the Cuban government had reached an agreement with the Catholic Church and the government of Spain pursuant to which Cuba agreed to release a number of political dissidents over the next few months. Some of the dissidents will be allowed to return home; others will be sent to Spain. Over the weekend, Cuba began making good on its promise, freeing the first three political prisoners. Spain has agreed to accept at least 5 of them and perhaps all 52. The dissidents have been in prison in Cuba since their arrest in 2003. The Cuban government's release of persons imprisoned for stating their beliefs is welcomed by the international human rights community, and it is hoped that the move signals a greater tolerance for peaceful disagreement in the country.