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American subcontractor for U.S. company detained in Cuba

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Officials: American man, who has not been identified, was detained December 5
  • He is a subcontractor for Maryland-based Development Alternatives Inc.
  • President of company says man was working for USAID program
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Washington (CNN) -- An American citizen has been detained in Cuba for the past week, the U.S. State Department said Saturday.

The U.S. Interests Section in Havana has requested to meet with the American as soon as possible, the State Department said in a statement. The man, who was not identified, was detained December 5, federal officials said.

"We are confirming his location with the Cuban government at this time," the State Department statement said.

The detained American is a subcontractor for Maryland-based Development Alternatives Inc., an economic development organization, the company's chief said Saturday.

"Our prime concern is for the safety, well-being, and quick return to the United States of the detained individual," said President and CEO Jim Boomgard in a statement Saturday. "We have been working closely with the State Department to ensure that the detainee's safety and well-being is given top priority."

The American was involved in a new USAID program aimed at helping the U.S. government "implement activities in support of the rule of law and human rights, political competition, and consensus building, and to strengthen civil society in support of just and democratic governance in Cuba," Boomgard said.

DAI was awarded the USAID contract, called the Cuba Democracy and Contingency Planning Program, in 2008.

 
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