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Sonia Pierre, human rights activist, dies

SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic -- Sonia Pierre, a human-rights activist who fought discrimination against poor Dominicans of Haitian descent for more than three decades, has died, colleagues say. She was 48.

Lawyer Genaro Rincón works with Pierre's Dominican-Haitian Women's Movement and said Pierre died Sunday of a heart attack in her hometown of Villa Altagracia.

Pierre's heart troubles were first discovered in 2007 when she was in Washington to receive the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award honoring her work securing citizenship and education for Dominican-born ethnic Haitians like herself.

Her work made her the target of threats in the Dominican Republic, but it earned her recognition from overseas as a fierce defender of human rights.

-- AP

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