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Dozens of dissidents arrested in Cuba as major summit looms

Dozens of dissidents have been detained in a "wave of political repression" ahead of a major international summit in Cuba, activists said Sunday. The Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) summit hosting heads of state from across the region provides opportunities for dissidents in the Americas' only one-party Communist-ruled state to try to raise their profiles, and seek world leaders' ears. "The government is carrying out a wave of political repression ahead of the summit" in Havana that ends Wednesday, warned dissident Elizardo Sanchez.

Cuban dissident arrested after meeting with European leaders

Leading Cuban dissident Jose Daniel Ferrer has been arrested after meeting with European diplomats in Havana, activists said Saturday. Elizardo Sanchez, founder and leader of the illegal but tolerated Cuban Human Rights and National Reconciliation Commission, said Ferrer was arrested late Friday and that it was unclear where he had been taken. Ferrer lives in Santiago de Cuba, some 900 kilometers (560 miles) southeast of Havana, where he leads the Patriotic Cuban Union dissident group.

Cubans can now rent homes, commercial space

For the first time in half a century, Cubans are being allowed to rent homes and commercial properties under a decision announced by the government Wednesday. The measure allows "Cuban individuals residing in Cuba" to use "real estate leasing services offered by authorized real estate entities," according to the resolution in the Communist-run nation's Official Gazette. It also stipulates that Cubans cannot rent properties for use as "international schools, news agencies and NGOs."

Cubans can now rent homes, commercial space

For the first time in half a century, Cubans are being allowed to rent homes and commercial properties under a decision announced by the government Wednesday. The measure allows "Cuban individuals residing in Cuba" to use "real estate leasing services offered by authorized real estate entities," according to the resolution in the Communist-run nation's Official Gazette. It also stipulates that Cubans cannot rent properties for use as "international schools, news agencies and NGOs."

Cuban dissident says her home is "under siege"

Havana, Jan 22 (EFE).- The only woman who was part of the "Group of 75" political prisoners told Efe Wednesday that she asked a Cuban court to send her back to jail, because she prefers it to the "siege" she says she has been suffering under for months in her home in Havana. Marta Beatriz Roque, who was paroled in 2004, said on Monday that she presented a letter to the court asking for the revocation of her parole in the face of the "harassment" she is suffering from neighbors and the police.

Cuban dissident says her home is "under siege"

Havana, Jan 22 (EFE).- The only woman who was part of the "Group of 75" political prisoners told Efe Wednesday that she asked a Cuban court to send her back to jail, because she prefers it to the "siege" she says she has been suffering under for months in her home in Havana. Marta Beatriz Roque, who was paroled in 2004, said on Monday that she presented a letter to the court asking for the revocation of her parole in the face of the "harassment" she is suffering from neighbors and the police.

Cubans allowed to rent buildings via gov't real-estate agencies

Havana, Jan 22 (EFE).- Cubans have been given the go-ahead to rent buildings through state-run real-estate agencies, which until now had only provided their services to state institutions and companies and to foreign citizens and firms, the government said Wednesday. President Raul Castro's government eliminated that restriction in a resolution published in the official gazette that allows ordinary Cuban citizens to rent buildings for use as homes, offices, commercial establishments or warehouses.

Cubans can now rent homes, commercial space

For the first time in half a century, Cubans are being allowed to rent homes and commercial properties under a decision announced by the government Wednesday. The measure authorizes "Cuban individuals residing in Cuba" to use "real estate leasing services that are offered by authorized real estate entities," according to the resolution. It also stipulates that Cubans cannot rent properties for use as "international schools, news agencies and NGOs."

Spain says EU considering closer ties with Cuba, but human rights issues remain a priority

MADRID - European Union countries may consider upgrading the bloc's trade relations with Cuba, but only if Havana respects human rights, Spain's foreign minister said Monday. Jose Manuel Garcia Margallo said EU countries have discussed asking the European Commission, the EU's executive arm, to explore the possibility of reaching an association agreement with Cuba. Association agreements normally pave the way for trade liberalization with countries outside the 28-nation EU.

Cuba sees "major role" for foreign investment

Cuba plans to open its economy to greater foreign investment under a new law to be taken up soon by its legislature, a report in state-run media said Saturday. Outside investment no longer would be merely a "complement" to Cuba's state-run economy but "would occupy a major role" under the proposed law, said Pedro San Jorge, a top official at Cuba's Ministry of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment. The national assembly is take up the bill in March as part of an ongoing overhaul of Cuba's Soviet-style economy under President Raul Castro.
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