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Cuban Doctors Abroad Helped to Defect by New U.S. Visa Policy

Wednesday, Aug. 1, 2007

BOGOTÁ, Colombia -- When the Cuban government in 2005 selected Andres to treat the sick in Venezuela's barrios, the chance to help poor Venezuelans was less important for the Cuban doctor than the opportunity to escape his communist homeland.

"I didn't arrive in Venezuela to work, I arrived and deserted right away," he recalled in a recent interview in Bogotá while awaiting a hoped-for United States visa. Like other Cuban defectors, Andres asked that his full name not be used in order to prevent possible retaliation against relatives in Cuba. ...

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