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Cuba eases conditions of political prisoners

A Roman Catholic church official said the Cuban government agreed to move many of the country's 200 political prisoners to jails closer to their homes.

The government's decision comes just days after a rare meeting between Cuban President Raul Castro and two church leaders, including Cuban Cardinal Jaime Ortega.

Orlando Marquez, a Havana church official, said: "The office of religious affairs of the central committee of the Cuban Communist Party advised the Catholic Church on Friday that as of next week the political prisoners will be transferred to jails in their place of origin."

It was not clear if all of the political prisoners would be moved, or how many of those who are ailing will receive treatment.