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US Condemns Cuban Crackdown on Dissidents

The United States has condemned what it calls Cuba's continuing repression of reformists.

State Department Spokesman Richard Boucher Thursday said political prisoners under the Castro regime have been beaten repeatedly while in prison. He also said seven prisoners that were released due to illness continue to face daily harassment, re-arrests and lengthy interrogations.

Havana has imprisoned some 75 people with sentences averaging 20 years in a crackdown on dissidents that began in March 2003.

Mr. Boucher called on Cuba to end the abuse of reformists, and to release all of its political prisoners.