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Castro’s Daughter Denied Permission To Visit Philadelphia For Upcoming Conference

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(Mariela Castro, in Feburary 2013.  Credit: Adalberto Roque/ AFP/ Getty Images)

(Mariela Castro, in Feburary 2013. Credit: Adalberto Roque/ AFP/ Getty Images)

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The daughter of Cuba President Raul Castro won’t be traveling to Philadelphia to accept an award for her gay rights advocacy.

Officials at the Equality Forum said Thursday that the State Department has denied permission for Mariela Castro to attend the group’s annual conference.

A State Department spokesman says he can’t comment because visa records are confidential.

Mariela Castro is the niece of retired Cuban leader Fidel Castro. She is the director of Cuba’s National Center for Sex Education and the nation’s most prominent gay rights activist.

Equality Forum executive director Malcom Lazin says Mariela Castro accepted an invitation several months ago to speak at the conference and receive an award on May 4.

Castro received a visa last year to attend events in New York and San Francisco.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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