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January 15, 2014 8:03 am

John Kerry Enlists the Vatican to Help Free American-Jewish Prisoner Alan Gross

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Alan Gross and his wife Judy in Jerusalem. Photo: Gross family. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has asked the Vatican to help secure the release of Jewish-American prisoner Alan Gross, who has been held in Cuba for more than four years.

On Tuesday, Kerry met with the Vatican’s secretary of state, Archbishop Pietro Parolin, to discuss a wide range of mutual issues, including the human rights situation in Cuba.

“I raised the issue of Alan Gross and his captivity, and we hope very much that there might be able to be assistance with respect to that issue,” Kerry said in a statement to the press following his meeting at the Vatican.

This past December marked the fourth anniversary of the incarceration of Gross, who is serving a 15-year prison term for helping Cuba’s Jewish community access the Internet while he was a subcontractor for the United States Agency for International Development.

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