[Ppnews] Free Abdel-Jabbar Hamdan!

Political Prisoner News PPnews at freedomarchives.org
Thu Dec 1 15:13:52 EST 2005


Subject: [jericho_boston_announce] Free Abdel-Jabbar Hamdan!


Palestinian humanitarian Abdel-Jabbar Hamdan has been unjustly 
detained since July 2004. Please take a few moments to phone, fax or 
email Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials to ask 
why  they are detaining Mr. Hamdan. If you don't have time to call or 
write,  please sign the online petition calling for Mr. Hamdan's release:
<http://www.petitiononline.com/Hamdan/petition.html>http://www.petitiononline.com/Hamdan/petition.html 
.


[Note that Abdel-Jabbar Hamdan is not the same Hamdan accused of 
being Bin Laden's driver.  Abdel-Jabbar Hamdan is in immigration 
proceedings and accused of providing material support to terrorists 
for his fundraising activities on behalf of Palestinian charities.]

Tuesday December 6, 2005 at 10AM there will be a court hearing for an 
ACLU Petition filed with the Federal Court in Los Angeles to Demand 
the Release of Brother Abdel-Jabbar Hamdan

Please tell Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to Free Brother 
Abdel-Jabbar Hamdan NOW!

Abdel-Jabbar Hamdan has been detained on an alleged immigration 
violation for more than 16 months, since July 27, 2004. In July the 
ACLU filed a petition seeking his release (see LA Times article 
below), but we need YOU to help step up the pressure on ICE with 
phone calls, faxes or emails.

Mr. Hamdan is a respected community leader in Orange County, 
California, who has been living in the US for 25 years and has six 
US-born children. He has never been charged with a crime, and he is 
not a security threat. Mr. Hamdan's health continues to deteriorate 
in jail. An immigration judge ruled last February that Mr. Hamdan 
cannot be deported to Jordan because he would face torture there.

Tell ICE: The use of immigration detention as punishment--for 
ethnicity, religion, political views or other reasons--is illegal and 
unconstitutional.

Ask ICE: why are you keeping Mr. Hamdan in jail?

Call, fax or email:

John P. Torres, Acting Deputy Assistant Director, Office of Detention 
and Removal Operations (DRO), US Immigration and Customs Enforcement 
(ICE), 425 I Street NW, Washington, DC 20536; Phone: 202-514-0078 or 
202-514-8663; Fax: 202-353-9435; email 
<mailto:John.Torres at dhs.gov>John.Torres at dhs.gov

Gloria Kee, field operations director of ICE Detention and Removal 
Office in Los Angeles, 300 North Los Angeles St, Los Angeles, CA 
90012; phone213-830-7900, 213-830-7913 or 213-830-7970; fax 
213-830-7973; email <mailto:gloria.kee at dhs.gov>gloria.kee at dhs.gov

Sign an online petition to demand Mr. Hamdan's release at
<http://www.petitiononline.com/Hamdan/petition.html>http://www.petitiononline.com/Hamdan/petition.html

***
http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-hamdan15jul15,1,4486339.story

ACLU Seeks Freedom for Muslim Accused of Ties to Terrorists
A Buena Park man has been jailed for a year on suspicion of aiding
Hamas. No evidence exists of security threat, civil rights petition
says.

By H.G. Reza
LA Times Staff Writer
July 15, 2005

Civil rights lawyers asked a federal judge Thursday to free a Buena
Park man who has been jailed for a year after Homeland Security officials
accused him of having ties to terrorism.

The American Civil Liberties Union petitioned U.S. District Court in
Los Angeles on behalf of Abdel-Jabbar Hamdan, who was prosecuted for being
in the United States illegally. An immigration judge this year ordered
him deported and refused to grant him bail while he appealed, on
grounds that he was a threat to national security.

The 17-page petition says "there is not one shred of evidence in
support of the government's argument that Hamdan poses a danger to national
security." It calls his continued detention arbitrary, unlawful and
capricious.

Hamdan's case has been a rallying cry for critics of the Bush
administration's practice of using allegations of terrorism as grounds
to arrest Muslims. In many cases, the suspects are never charged with
terrorist crimes but instead are prosecuted for immigration law
violations.

Hamdan, 44, worked as a fundraiser for the Texas-based Holy Land
Foundation, an Islamic charity shut down by U.S. officials in December
2001 after it was accused of supporting Hamas, which was designated a
Palestinian terrorist organization in 1997. The foundation's president,
chairman and director of endowments also were arrested July 27 and
charged with terrorism-related crimes. They are awaiting trial but were
released on their own recognizance after a federal judge ruled the
government had failed to prove they were flight risks and a threat to
national security.

"The government cannot justify its decision to detain Hamdan while
releasing [foundation] executives who it conceded were more
knowledgeable about and responsible for [the group's] activities," said
the petition written by ACLU lawyer Ranjana Natarajan. Her writ also
said Hamdan was not involved in the distribution of funds he collected
for the charity and that U.S. officials "never even attempted to prove
Hamdan raised funds with the intent to further terrorist activity."

Lori Haley, spokeswoman for Immigration and Customs Enforcement in
Laguna Niguel, said an immigration court ruled that Hamdan "should have
known that his activities constituted material support for a terrorist
organization."

She also defended the government's tactics in the case. "We're going to
use every tool at our disposal to safeguard our country and prevent
individuals from obtaining funds here to advance the aim of terrorist
organizations," Haley said.

Homeland Security officials said Hamdan had been living in the U.S.
illegally on a student visa issued more than 25 years ago. Yet the
agency working to deport Hamdan - Immigration and Customs Enforcement -
continued issuing him annual work permits, according to the petition.

At the time of Hamdan's arrest, agency officials were reviewing his
application for permanent U.S. residency.

According to the petition, on the day of his arrest Hamdan was taken to
a government office in Santa Ana where immigration officials held a
"spontaneous and unscheduled interview" for his permanent residency
application and denied the request. In May, the U.S. Citizenship and
Immigration Services overturned the denial on grounds that Hamdan had
been improperly notified by the agency of its "intent to deny" his
application, the petition says.

Further complicating the case, U.S. Immigration Judge D.D. Sitgraves,
who ordered Hamdan deported and held without bond, also blocked the
government's attempt to return him to his native Jordan, where he was
born in a Palestinian refugee camp. Sitgraves ruled that Hamdan might
be persecuted or tortured if returned to Jordan, a U.S. ally in the war on
terror.

Immigration experts say third-party countries are reluctant to accept
someone who has been branded as a terrorism supporter by the U.S.
Immigration officials this year were forced to free four Iranian
brothers from Los Angeles after keeping them locked up more than three
years. The Mirmehdi brothers were accused of supporting a terrorist
group and being national security threats but instead were prosecuted
on immigration charges. They were ordered deported, but their deportations
to Iran were blocked by immigration judges.

They were subsequently freed when U.S. officials could not find a third
country to accept them, though two of the men remained under
deportation orders and the other two were appealing them.

Hamdan, an engineering graduate of USC, is president of the Anaheim
mosque West Coast Islamic Society and a leader in the Southern
California Islamic community. He is the father of six U.S.-born
children ranging in age from 8 to 21. Yaman Hamdan, who is the oldest and a
pre-law student at Chapman University, said the entire family visited
her father four days a week at the immigration detention facility at
Terminal Island.

"They squeeze us into a glass room barely bigger than a telephone
booth. My dad sits behind a glass wall. When we leave, the whole room is
fogged up," she said. "We feel like we're all in jail. None of us wants to
leave the house" for fear of missing his calls.

Entesar Hamdan, principal at a private Islamic school, said she would
accompany her husband if he was deported but would let her children
decide whether to go or stay.

"I am a foreigner, but these are American-born kids. They can hardly
speak Arabic. How are they going to fit in an Arab country? We are an
American family who happens to be Muslim," said Hamdan, a Palestinian
like her husband.

She said her family was devastated by the government's accusation that
her husband was a terrorism supporter. But the family has survived with
help from the Islamic community and her neighbors, none of whom are
Muslim, she said.

"What's the easiest accusation you can make against a person in this
country?" she asked.

"Terrorist," answered her son, Albara, 11.

***
More coverage at:
<http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/state/20050715-0125-ca-palestiniandeportee.html>http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/state/20050715-0125-ca-palestiniandeportee.html



Jericho Boston
P.O. Box 301057
JP, MA 02130
www.jerichoboston.org
jericho_boston (at) yahoo (dot) com

The Freedom Archives
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San Francisco, CA 94110
(415) 863-9977
www.freedomarchives.org 
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