Issue US Visa for Iranian Barista Champion to enter US in April for World Barista Championship
This petition had 482 supporters
US State Department
Urgent: Visa for Iranian Barista to attend World Barista Championship in Seattle April 9-12
We, people of coffee community around the world, want to express sadness that the first Iranian Barista who won recent Barista Championship in Iran won't be able to compete at WBC (World Barista Championship) to be held in Seattle, Washington, April 9-12. We recently received news from Iran stating that US Consulate in Turkey refused to grant US visa for Iranian Barista Champion Mehran Mohammad Nezhad to enter US in April for World Competition due to "political" reason. The hostile relationship between Iran and the US got to the very extreme by denying cultural exchange for people who have passion and eagerness to succeed in the profession they love. This is World Barista Championship that unites people from around the world, and we do not care about their political view or nationality. We are building a bridge between countries and cultures. We promoting education, building network among industry professionals and help to exchange ideas and spread the word of specialty coffee. Iran is new to specialty coffee market, and with tremendous efforts, hard work and dedication they were able to finally pull the first Championship that was recognized internationally. For 2 years of hard work and hardship, IBG - Iranian Barista Guild faced, and despite all shortages, their team was able to advance quick enough to make the first IRBC happen recently. And just refusing visa that solely based on no fault of their own action, but by confrontations between the two governments is totally absurd and unjustified. We had many confrontations between Soviet Union during Cold War, Cuba during missile crisis but we still were able to bring people to US soil for cultural exchange and participation on international conferences.
We, voices of coffee community, appeal to US Embassy to do everything possible to allow Mehran to enter US in April for World Barista Championship that takes place in Seattle, WA and proudly stand in front of the judges to represent his country for the first time on international level.
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