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US, Cuba prepare exchange of jail and hospital inmates

The United States and Cuba are close to an agreement on exchanging 2,700 ''Marielitos'' now held in American jails and mental institutions for up to 30, 000 politically unreliable prisoners in Cuba, the Washington Times said Thursday.

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The newspaper quoted informed US officials as saying Cuban Premier Fidel Castro appeared to have decided that President Reagan would be reelected and wanted to make a conciliatory gesture to improve relations.