Raul Castro Empties Cuba's Death Row

New president commutes all but 3 capital sentences
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 29, 2008 8:31 AM CDT
Raul Castro gestures as he attends a session of the National Assembly in Havana, Sunday, Feb. 24, 2008. .    (AP Photo/Ismael Francisco,Prensa Latina)
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(Newser) – New Cuban president Raul Castro has commuted all but three of the country's death sentences to prison terms of 30 years to life, reports Reuters. Castro, who also has been gradually easing the country's restrictions on daily life, said the death penalty would remain on the books to deter "imperialist mercenaries." The three prisoners remaining on death row are charged with terrorist offenses.