“The University of Nebraska-Lincoln has sued the Department of Homeland Security in a ramped-up effort to bring a long-awaited hire to the United States.
UNL filed a lawsuit Friday in U.S. District Court asking a judge demand federal officials to consider the visa petition of Waskar Ari, a Bolivian professor hired by UNL in 2005 to teach courses on Latin American history.
UNL hired Ari as an assistant professor of history and ethnic studies in February 2005, just before he earned a doctoral degree from Georgetown University. Ari was viewed as a top draw for his expertise on Latin American indigenous communities.
In June of that year, Ari returned to Bolivia for a quick family visit. Upon arriving, he found that not only had his student visa been canceled, but he could not get a replacement work visa to come to the U.S. because the government had detected “derogatory information” in his file.
Someone may have linked Ari to Morales because they are both Aymara Indians, Maggio says.
But he, Ari and UNL all say there is no evidence Ari poses a security threat. Still, despite significant media attention, Ari’s case has not moved forward.
“There’s no reason for this petition to be denied,” Levitov said. “There’s no reason at all.”