The Crescent Report

April 15, 2008

MAS Freedom Launches ‘What About Sami?’ Campaign

Filed under: American-Politics, Muslim Americans — Tags: , , , — Imam Mahdi Bray @ 7:46 pm

Today at The Malcolm X and Dr. Betty Shabazz Memorial and Educational Center, in New York, MAS Freedom (MASF), as the civic and human rights advocacy entity of the Muslim American Society (MAS), joined a coalition of advocates for a press conference held on behalf of Dr. Sami Al-Arian, reiterating the continued call for his release.


On April 12, Dr. Sami Al-Arian, then in the 41st day of a hunger strike he began on April 3, 2008 in protest of the U.S. government’s continued abuse of power in refusing to fulfill its obligation under a plea agreement outlining terms for his release, was transferred to the Howard County Detention Center in Jessup, Maryland, to the ‘Special Housing Unit’ (SHU) or solitary confinement.


Under the extenuating circumstance of Dr. Al-Arian’s weakening health, this is a move that can be seen as nothing short of a continuation of the government’s attempts to physically and psychologically break the resolve of a man who has been subjected to tactics such as this, despite being acquitted at trial, for the past 5 years.


“As it became increasingly clear that the seemingly endless, unjust incarceration of Dr. Al-Arian would not end with the promised release as outlined in his agreement with the U.S. government, on March 21, MAS Freedom launched a Judiciary Letter Writing Campaign in addition to sending representatives to meet with U.S. Congressmen all to no avail,” stated MAS Freedom Executive Director, Mahdi Bray.


Bray continued, “If the judiciary committee will not exercise its oversight in this gross miscarriage of justice, then the American people must, together with religious leaders of all faiths, human rights and civil liberties advocates, and all people of conscience, in asking what our public officials and members of congress have refused to ask, “What About Sami”?


We must stand in solidarity in the call for accountability on the part of the federal government in demanding the release of Dr. Al-Arian,” Bray concluded.


In the days ahead MAS Freedom will be providing additional information and downloadable graphics (logo) that can be used for posters, flyers, banners, yard signs, badges, and buttons in support of the nationwide “What About Sami?” campaign. 


The call to justice will ring from state to state, country to country until the day of Dr. Al-Arian’s release, as we continue to ask, “What About Sami?”


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