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Top Cuban Dissident Dies In Crash

One of Cuba's best-known dissidents, Oswaldo Paya, has died in a car crash.

The 60-year-old Paya, leader of the Christian Democratic Movement, was traveling in the eastern part of Cuba at the time of the accident.

Further details on the crash were not immediately available.

Paya led a petition campaign calling for a referendum on one-party rule in 2002, handing in more than 30,000 signatures.

The petition was rejected by Cuba's communist government, but Paya emerged as Cuba's leading advocate of peaceful democratic change.

Paya received the European Union's top human rights award in 2002, the Sakharov Prize, named after the late Soviet dissident.

He also had been nominated twice for the Nobel Peace Prize by former Czech President Vaclav Havel.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AFP