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Special Event

Gonzalez Family Attorney Addresses Reporters

Aired March 27, 2000 - 12:03 p.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

FRANK SESNO, CNN ANCHOR: We want to take you now to Miami. We told you a news conference was going to be under way regarding the relatives of Elian Gonzalez.

Here now one of the attorneys, as we listen in. This is Linda Osberg.

LINDA OSBERG-BRAUN, GONZALEZ FAMILY ATTORNEY: ... versus picking Elian up and taking him away to Cuba, which we all know will obliterate his appellate rights, and the United States doesn't have the power to ever get him back. He will be harmed permanently if he leaves this country, and that's our first and foremost priority and concern: that Elian Gonzalez stays in this great country. That's why we have complied with INS's ultimatum.

And at the same time, while we are working on the April 3rd and the April 10th deadline, at the same time, this morning we have filed before the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals an emergency motion for them to set the briefing schedule. Because the court of appeals is in the best situation to determine what is fair and what this appeal needs to be heard fairly, not the Department of Justice.

So while we will be working on the April 3rd intense deadline, we will also be waiting for the decision before the 11th Circuit to set the fair and the just briefing schedule in this case.

We have past out our response in writing to the government and to INS and also a copy of that motion we have filed.

Thank you very much.

SESNO: You heard a very brief statement there from a lawyer representing Elian Gonzalez and the family of his Miami relatives, saying that the family has filed court papers agreeing to an expedited review and procedure here, however, not accepting the deadlines as laid out by the Department of Justice, those deadlines taking place over the next two weeks.

You hear here the family is asking that the courts set independent deadlines, a statement flatly that Elian Gonzalez will be harmed permanently if he leaves this country, and clearly the strategy remains to try to win time and try to win a decision that will allow young Elian Gonzalez to stay in the United States and not return to Cuba. TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com

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