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March Saturday

Cuban sports markedly hindered by the U.S. blockade

HAVANA, Cuba, Feb 17 (ACN) Raúl Fornés, first vice president of the National Institute of Sports, Physical Education and Recreation (Inder), said today at a virtual conference that Cuban sports face many difficulties due to the unjust economic, commercial and financial U.S. blockade,

which makes it hard to access state-of-the-art technologies that contribute to the development of our sports.

He cited as examples the obstacles to purchase sports equipment and gear, not only for the benefit of athletes and coaches but also for scientific centers such as the anti-doping laboratory, and to the participation of Cuban athletes in U.S.-based competitions, as they have to travel to third countries to get a visa because the U.S. Embassy in Havana is not offering this and other consular services.

“This makes the whole process much more expensive; in some cases we have had to pay about 35,000 dollars worth of visas for tournaments that would otherwise require only 7,200 if we could apply for them in Cuba,” he said.

Fornés also mentioned the impact on education, since the blockade prevents Cuban universities from having exchanges with their U.S. counterparts and scholars and scientists in that country have to deal with many obstacles to attend conferences in Cuba.

Called Negative effects of the U.S. blockade on Cuba, this online conference was hosted by the Cuban Institute of Friendship with the Peoples (ICAP) and included interventions by executives, active athletes and former sports stars. Solidarity movements around the world also participated.

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