2014 US Barista Champion Laila Ghambari reports via Facebook that Mehran Mohammad Nezhad, the first World Coffee Events sanctioned Barista Champion of Iran, has been denied a US visa and will be unable to compete in the World Barista Championship.
Mehran Mohammad Nezhad competed at the Iran Barista Championship earlier this month.
We asked Ghambari if there was more information about the circumstances behind the denial. “Mehran Mohammad Nezhad and his coaches flew to Turkey to meet with the U.S. Consulate and in the end they denied them. There is not really much more to it than that.”
Laila Ghambari, who helped organize and facilitate Iran's barista championship, took to Facebook to voice her opinion:
We are all incredibly saddened but at the same time this doesn't change anything. What they accomplished is extraordinary and we can proudly say we crowned the first ever Iranian barista champion Mehran Mohammad Nezhad.
They came this far, they persevered, and they will continue to.
Until next year.
“We Only We”