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Latino Daily News

Saturday May 26, 2012

State Department Announces Basketball Envoy Program to Venezuela

State Department Announces Basketball Envoy Program to Venezuela

Photo: Greivis Vasquez

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

The U.S. State Department and the National Basketball Association (NBA) announced that they will send Nykesha Sales, a six-time Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) All-Star, to Venezuela May 28 - June 1. Sales will join Greivis Vasquez, a Venezuelan-born player with NBA’s New Orleans Hornets, to participate in a U.S. government exchange program that brings people together for greater understanding through sports.

Vasquez, who is a native of Caracas, and Sales will conduct basketball clinics with youth from underserved areas, touring to Politdeportivo de Baruta; Vargas, and Aragua States. This will be the second tour to Venezuela with the Department of State for Vasquez, who was part of the first Sports Envoy program to Caracas in June of 2011.

Sports diplomacy builds on Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton’s vision of “smart power,” says the State Department, embracing the full range of diplomatic tools, including sports, to bring individuals together to foster greater understanding.

In partnership with SportsUnited, NBA and WNBA players and coaches have visited over 40 countries since 2004.