Tuesday, April 24, 2007

The prison door swings both ways

The recent releases of Hector Palacios, Rene Gomez Manzano, Jorge Luís García Pérez, and other Cuban opposition activists from jail are welcome developments. But lest anyone think that there has been a change in heart in the Cuban government, two dissidents have been sentenced in secret trials in the past week, one having been arrested, tried, and convicted in a single day.

This is in contrast to the trials that followed the arrest of 75 dissidents in 2003, in which the government argued that the opposition is a creation of the U.S. government. One former dissident living in Miami tells the Herald that these recent actions are a sign of Fidel Castro’s return to power. The Herald’s grim roundup is here, AFP's report is here.

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