In response to Pope Francis' clemency call during the Year of Mercy, Cuba is pardoning 787 prisoners. CNS photo/Gregorio Borgia, Reuters pool

Cuba grants pardons to 787 prisoners

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  • November 15, 2016

Cuba is granting pardons to to 787 prisoners in response to Pope Francis' call for clemency during the Year of Mercy.

According to Granma, the official newspaper of Cuba's Communist Party, the country's Council of State is also "analyzing the possible early release of prisoners through which a large percentage are freed prior to completing their full sentences."

Among those being pardoned "for humanitarian reasons" are women, youth and those who are sick. The paper noted that some prisoners were excluded from consideration if they had been convicted of crimes with "severe consequences," such as murder, rape and drug trafficking.

In early November, the pope had appealed to all governments to extend "an act of clemency toward those imprisoned who are considered eligible to benefit from this measure."

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Freedom is a gift. We need to treasure freedom through constant prayer and vigilance.

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