Saturday Dec 24, 201104:43 AM GMT
US Gross not on Cuba pardon list
Sat Dec 24, 2011 4:46AM
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Cuban President Raul Castro announced on Friday that his country would pardon 2,900 prisoners.
Cuban state-media says the country's supreme governing body has granted a pardon to 2,900 prisoners, including some convicted of political crimes, with American Alan Gross not among them.


Cuban President Raul Castro announced on Friday that his country would pardon 2,900 prisoners. He added there are 86 foreign prisoners from 25 different countries among those who would be freed.

Cuba's vice foreign minister, Josefina Vidal, however said that the American prisoner, Alan Gross, is not among the prisoners granted amnesty.

Gross, a 62-year-old American was arrested in 2009 and sentenced to 15 years in jail for “Acts against the Independence and Territorial Integrity” of the state.

Cuban authorities arrested Gross at his Havana hotel in December 2009 on charges of illegally importing satellite communications equipment and of possibly spying.

Washington claims that Gross worked for a non-governmental organization contracted by the US State Department to supply computer and communications material and Internet access for the Jewish community in Cuba.

The case has since stalled steps by both governments to improve relations.

The United States and Cuba have not had formal diplomatic ties since 1961.

PG/AZ
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