Friday, November 6, 2009

The Philadelphia Bulletin: Israelis Dispute Claims Over Conference - Yet Allegations of Egypt Excluding Israel From Cancer Conference Confirmed

by David Bedein

JERUSALEM - The Bulletin of Oct. 25 publicized the revelation that Israeli experts in breast cancer have been barred from attending a conference concerning cures for breasts cancer in Cairo. However, the spokesperson for Nancy Brinker, founder and head of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure organization, which raises significant amounts of money to fight breast cancer, wrote to The Bulletin that despite threats in Egypt, Israelis were not barred from the Cairo conference.

Yet the Israeli government and the Hadassah Women’s Organization claim that Israeli medical professionals were indeed barred from the conference, leaving The Israel Medical Association (IMA) on Tuesday to denounce “all boycotts of Israelis at international medical conferences such as the one held in Cairo last week on coping with breast cancer.”

IMA chairman Dr. Leonid Eidelman told the Jerusalem Post that “Israeli doctors and scientists are often confronted by hostility when attending professional conferences abroad.”

Dr. Eidelman emphasized that medicine and science are not political. Even those who oppose policies of the government of Israel should never inject politics into these fields, which aim to save lives and to which Israelis contribute a great deal, he said.

Dr. Eidelman added that conferences that keep Israelis out would constitute a “black day for science in Israel and around the world.”

Ms. Brinker was asked for comment on her letter dispatched to The Bulletin, which claimed that Cairo has not barred Israeli medical professionals from the conference. No response was received from her office.

View the original article in the Philadelphia Bulletin

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