DC Jewish Community Relations Council petition appeals to Cuba's
leadership to release Gross before Rosh Hashana.
An online petition to free the Jewish American contractor Alan Gross
garnered almost 1,000 signatures in its first day.
The petition launched Monday appeals to Cuba's leadership to release
Gross on humanitarian grounds before the High Holidays begin with Rosh
Hashana on Sept. 29. Gross, 62, is serving a 15-year prison sentence in
Cuba for "crimes against the state" for distributing laptop computers
and connecting Cuban Jews to the Internet.
The Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington sponsored
Gross was arrested in 2009 as he was leaving Cuba and accused of being a
spy. His appeal was rejected recently by the island nation's Supreme
Court, and now the only legal avenue left available is for the
commutation of his sentence by President Raul Castro.
Since his incarceration, Gross reportedly has lost approximately 100
pounds and is suffering from partial paralysis, as well as other
ailments. His daughter has breast cancer and his mother was diagnosed
with cancer as well.
"HELP US FREE ALAN GROSS.
SIGN PETITION TO CUBAN LEADERSHIP TODAY."