U.S.: Cuba completes release of 53 political prisoners

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ISLAMABAD — Cuba has completed the release of 53 political prisoners that was part of last month’s historic deal between the United States and Cuba, the U.S. said Monday

The prisoners had been on a list of opposition figures whose release was sought as part of the U.S. agreement last month with the Cuban government. They had been cited by various human rights organizations as being imprisoned by the Cuban government for exercising internationally protected freedoms or for their promotion of political and social reforms in Cuba.

The U.S. has verified the release, according to an official traveling with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry in Islamabad. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the official was not authorized to discuss the issue on the record.

Last month, Cuba and the U.S. agreed to work to restore normal diplomatic relations as part of a deal in which Cuba freed an imprisoned U.S. aid worker along with an imprisoned spy working for the U.S. and the imprisoned dissidents. The U.S. released several Cuba intelligence agents. The deal came after 50 years of hostility between the two countries.

MATTHEW LEE, AP Diplomatic Writer

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