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February 12, 1986

Amnesty International charged that the CIA encourages Nicaraguan rebels, known as contras , to torture and execute prisoners, and it faulted both the rebel and government forces for human rights abuses. The London-based organization said the number of victims of the U.S.-backed contras "is believed to total many hundreds." And it said that while the Sandinista government has eased some of its restrictions on personal freedom, including censorship and rights to strike and hold public meetings, many reported killings and disappearances go unsolved. It also cited the treatment of prisoners by government forces.

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