Catholic Church announces release of 5 more Cuban prisoners who agreed to go into exile


The Roman Catholic Church on Thursday announced the names of five more Cuban inmates who have accepted exile in Spain in return for freedom, though none are among a group of 52 political prisoners jailed in a 2003 roundup of dissidents.

The prisoners — four men and a woman — were convicted of such crimes as hijacking and terrorism, and sentenced to jail terms ranging from 10 to 17 years.

Four of the five are on a Cuban human rights group's list of inmates whose arrests or sentences are considered to have been politically motivated, despite the fact they were found guilty of violent crimes. The fifth is not on any list of known Cuban political prisoners.
Amnesty International and other international human rights organizations generally do not consider people found guilty of violent acts to be "prisoners of conscience," though the groups say such cases may still constitute miscarriages of justice.

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