Cuban Cycling Federation protests visa denial
Taken from Granma International
January 20, 2006
THE Cuban Cycling Federation (FCC) expressed an energetic protest regarding the denial of U.S. entry visas to athletes Yoanka González Pérez and Yumari González Valdivieso and trainer Leonel Álvarez Díaz, who were to participate in the third stage of the World Cup in Los Angeles, California, from January 20 to 22.
"We completed the application process fully and on time with the U.S. Interests Section in Havana, but they still did not grant the visas," explained José Peláez, FCC president.
"This once again violates the commitment of organizing committees of international sports events to ensure entry into the host country for all athletes, coaches and officials who are to attend events," Peláez said, recalling that such a disposition is stipulated by the International Olympic Committee and, in this case, the International Cycling Union (UCI).
Peláez noted that the World Cup, from which the Cuban delegation has been excluded, is a classifying event for the upcoming World championship competitions, and this arbitrary decision is another attack on the principles of the Olympic Charter, and particularly against the legitimate rights of Cuban sports, as a consequence of the absurd U.S. policy toward Cuba