U.S. Again Bars Cuban Scholars From International Conference





The United States has denied visas to all 55 Cuban scholars who had planned to attend an international conference of the Latin American Studies Association next week in Puerto Rico.

According to the association, known as LASA, the Cubans were informed of the decision on February 23, just three weeks before the conference is scheduled to start, on March 15. The association holds an international conference every 18 months.

The decision is consistent with Bush administration decisions that have increasingly tightened restrictions against academic and other contacts between Americans and Cubans. In March 2003, only 60 of 105 Cuban academics were granted U.S. visas to attend LASA's conference in Dallas. In 2004 all 65 Cubans who had planned to attend the group's conference in Las Vegas were informed 10 days before the gathering that they would be barred from entering the United States (The Chronicle, October 1, 2004).

In a letter sent late last month to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, LASA stated: "The U.S. government's decision seriously interferes with LASA's ability to carry out its core mission and represents an egregious affront to academic freedom." Nearly 6,000 academics are expected at the gathering in Puerto Rico.



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Arnold Shcherban - 3/9/2006

This administration is upfront for
financial and religious attack on freedoms, democracy and science around
the world.

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