Cuba: Record number of political detentions in year before Obama reset

Cuba: Record number of political detentions in year before Obama reset

[Ed. – Obama didn’t just reward the Castros for not changing their behavior.  He rewarded them for making it worse.]

The Cuban Commission for Human Rights and National Reconciliation recorded 8,899 short-term detentions of dissidents and activists in 2014. That was about 2,000 more than the previous year and four times as many as in 2010, said the group’s head, Elizardo Sanchez.

The detentions can last for a few hours or a few days, but do not lead to prison time. Some people have been detained several times in a month, so the total number of people detained is lower. …

The report also said dissidents inside Cuba did not know who was on the list of 53 whom the U.S. asked Cuba to release as part of a detente announced last month. Neither the U.S. nor Cuba has made the list public or said openly whether any of those on it have been released.

A U.S. official said on condition of anonymity Monday that some of the 53 had been released but efforts to secure the release of the dissidents was a “work in progress.” The official wasn’t authorized to provide details on who has been freed. The official said the release of all the dissidents wasn’t a prerequisite for planned talks in Cuba between the Obama administration and Cuban officials later this month. …

Obama…said he was “under no illusion about the continued barriers to freedom that remain for ordinary Cubans,” and Sanchez said Monday that he expected no major short-term changes in Cuba’s treatment of dissidents.

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