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Washington denies visas to Cuban athletes for Diamond League

11th IAAF World Athletics Championships: Day Seven
Yargelis Savigne

From Jamaica Observer

HAVANA, Cuba – The Cuban National Athletics Commission announced that the US Interest Section in Havana denied entry visas to Cuban athletes Yipsi Moreno and Yargelis Savigne, who expected to contest the 4th stage of the Eugene Diamond League [on Sat 1] in the United States.

Moreno a three-time world champ hammer thrower (Edmonton-2001, Paris-2003 and Helsinki-2005), and Olympic silver in Athens 2004 and Beijing 2008, expected to make her debut at the Diamond League on Saturday.

Savigne would also make her first presentation at the meet after having won the world crown in triple jump at Osaka 2007.

Given the US visa denial, Cuba will only be represented by Orlando Ortega (110 meter hurdles), who is already in the United States after he participated at the fourth stage of the meet last Saturday in New York, PL news agency reported on Friday.

This is not the first time that renowned Cuban sports figures are denied entry visas by US authorities. Other athletes who have been targets of the measures include Javier Sotomayor, high jump Olympic champ and Alberto Juantorena, two-time Olympic champ in 400 and 800 metres in Montreal 1976.

Yipsi Moreno

The Diamond League, with 14 track and field stages in Asia, Europe, the Middle East and the Americas, already held its first three rounds in Doha, Shanghai and New York.

Winners in each of the 32 athletics disciplines, included in the championship, will receive a money prize and a diamond trophy, along with their designation and Number One athletes in their sports modalities.

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