Cuban human rights group says short-term detentions of dissidents on the rise

An independent Cuban human rights group says the government has increased the use of temporary detentions of dissidents and political activists.

Elizardo Sanchez of the Cuban Commission for Human Rights and National Reconciliation says the group recorded 8,899 short-term detentions of dissidents and activists in 2014. That's about 2,000 more than the previous year and four times as many as in 2010.

The detentions can last for a few hours or a few days, but do not lead to prison time. Some people have been detained several times in a month, so the total number of people detained is lower.

Sanchez says his group counts about 90 people held in prison for political reasons — less than half the figure five years ago.