Thirteen Iraqi, Afghan veterinarians to attend AVMA convention

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To help support the rebuilding of the veterinary infrastructures in Iraq and Afghanistan, the AVMA has teamed with the U.S. Army, Department of Agriculture, and the U.S. Agency for International Development to bring at least 13 veterinarians from the two countries to the 142nd AVMA Annual Convention/28th World Veterinary Congress. The AVMA will waive the veterinarians' event registration fee, and the 3rd Infantry Division of the U.S. Army will sponsor travel for 10 Iraqi veterinarians. The USDA or USAID will sponsor travel for three Afghan veterinarians.

The AVMA, Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges, U.S. Army, and the USDA will coordinate activities for the veterinarians during the convention-congress, which will be held July 16-20 in Minneapolis. The veterinarians will participate in continuing education and other activities—such as the House of Delegates session and the AAVMC sessions—that are relevant to rebuilding the veterinary infrastructures in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Discussions to bring the veterinarians to the convention began during the International Veterinary Conference in Kuwait City last September. The AVMA and the AAVMC have since established the Taskforce on Veterinary Infrastructure in Iraq and Afghanistan to maintain relationships developed in Kuwait City and to provide continued assistance. At its meeting in March, the task force further organized the participation of the veterinarians at the convention.