Alan Gross: Castro's prisoner
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    More than 500 rabbis urge Cuba to release Gross

    More than 500 rabbis urge Cuba to release

    November 11, 2012

    WASHINGTON (JTA) — More than 500 rabbis urged the release of Alan

    Gross, citing an assessment by a U.S. radiologist that the American

    contractor jailed in Cuba might have a cancerous growth.

    "We would urge your government to release Mr. Gross on humanitarian

    grounds," said the letter sent Sunday to Cuban President .

    "Alternatively, if despite his and his family's suffering over the past

    three years in you remain determined to detain him, we would urge

    you to allow a doctor of his choosing to evaluate and treat him for

    whatever medical conditions that he may have."

    The letter cites an assessment last month of Gross' Cuban medical

    records by a radiologist in Bethesda, Md., Alan Cohen.

    The assessment says what Cuban doctors identified as a hematoma behind

    Gross' right shoulder is likely a tumor.

    "A soft tissue mass in an adult who has lost considerable weight must

    be assumed to represent a malignant tumor unless proven to be benign,"

    Cohen wrote.

    Most of the rabbis signing the letter are American, and represent all

    streams, including leaders of religious umbrella bodies. A number of

    the rabbis are from Israel and .

    Gross, 63, of Potomac, Md., was sentenced last year to 15 years in

    prison for "crimes against the state."

    He was in 2009 for allegedly bringing satellite phones and

    computer equipment to members of Cuba's Jewish community while working

    as a contractor for the U.S. Agency on International Development.

    Gross' wife, Judy was due Sunday to join a rally for his release to take

    place outside a performance in West Palm Beach, Fla. by the Cuban

    Symphony Orchestra.

    http://www.jta.org/news/article/2012/11/11/3111636/more-than-500-rabbis-urge-cuba-to-release-gross