04/21/2004 at 01:00 AM EDT
The custody case of six-year-old Cuban refugee Elian Gonzalez continues. Havana-born singing superstar Gloria Estefan urged the American government on Thursday not to force Elian to return to his father in Cuba, despite a U.S. immigration service ruling to the contrary. Estefan said, in a statement, that she spoke to U.S. attorney general Janet Reno on Elian's behalf. Vice President Al Gore also said on Thursday that Elian should be given permanent residency status in the U.S., a position in direct opposition to the Clinton White House stance. Meanwhile, Elian's father, Juan Miguel Gonzalez, is ready to come to Miami from Havana to be reunited with his son, who was brought to American shores last November. (Elian's mother and 10 others perished when the boat carrying them capsized.) Federal officials pushed back the deadline for a decision in the case from Friday to next Tuesday.