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Amnesty To Cuba: Release Doctor

November 20, 1997

LONDON (AP) _ Amnesty International urged the Cuban government on Thursday to release a doctor who is facing a long prison sentence.

Desi Mendoza Rivero was convicted Tuesday of using the mass media to spread enemy propaganda, the London-based human rights groups said.

``The basis of the charge against him was that he had issued statements, which were later disseminated by foreign newspapers and broadcast media, regarding an epidemic of dengue fever in Santiago de Cuba which, according to him, had caused several deaths,″ Amnesty International said.

The human rights organization said it considered Mendoza to be a prisoner of conscience.

``Expressing views which are at odds with official positions is no reason to be taken to court,″ it said.

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