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UN Expert Criticizes Cuban Human Rights Record

A United Nations human rights expert says Cuba has failed to improve its human rights record, criticizing government censorship and the detention of political dissidents.

French lawyer Christine Chanet told the U.N. Human Rights Council Tuesday that Cuba had not cooperated with her on the investigation of its human rights situation. She said she based her assessment on reports from academics, human rights groups, and non-governmental organizations.

Chanet criticized the crackdown on dissidents Havana carried out in 2003, when nearly 80 people were arrested and sentenced to long prison terms. She also criticized the U.S. economic embargo on Cuba that has been in place sine 1964, saying it has had disastrous economic and social effects.

Cuba's representative on the Human Rights Council called Chanet's report libelous and said he would throw it away, as he had done with earlier reports.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.