[Ppnews] Chicago US Attorney Escalates Attacks against Palestinians

Political Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Sun May 8 14:17:39 EDT 2011

From: "Committee to Stop FBI Repression" <info at stopfbi.net>

U.S. Attorney freezes bank accounts. Call Fitzgerald on Monday!

Committee to Stop FBI Repression (stopfbi.net)

U.S. Attorney Escalates Attacks on Civil Liberties of Anti-War, 
Palestinian Human Rights Activists

Call U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald first thing Monday morning! 
(contact info at bottom of this email)

On Friday, May 6, the U.S. government froze the bank accounts of 
Hatem Abudayyeh and his wife, Naima. This unwarranted attack on a 
leading member of the Palestinian community in Chicago is the latest 
escalation of the repression of anti-war and Palestinian community 
organizers by the FBI, U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, and U.S. 
Attorney General Eric Holder. Hatem Abudayyeh is one of 23 activists 
from Minnesota, Michigan, and Illinois subpoenaed to a federal grand 
jury in Chicago, and his home was raided by the FBI in September of 
last year. Neither Hatem Abudayyeh nor Naima Abudayyeh have been 
charged with any crime.

One of the bank accounts frozen was exclusively in Naima Abudayyeh's 
name. Leaders of the national Committee to Stop FBI Repression, as 
well as Chicago's Coalition to Protect People's Rights are appalled 
at the government's attempt to restrict the family's access to its 
finances, especially so soon before Mothers' Day. Not only does the 
government's action seriously disrupt the lives of the Abudayyehs and 
their five-year-old daughter, but it represents an attack on 
Chicago's Arab community and activist community and the fundamental 
rights of Americans to freedom of speech.

The persecution of the Abudayyeh family is another example of the 
criminalization of Palestinians, their supporters, and their movement 
for justice and liberation. There has been widespread criticism of 
the FBI and local law enforcement for their racial profiling and 
scapegoating of Arab and Muslim Americans. These repressive tactics 
include infiltration of community centers and mosques, entrapment of 
young men, and the prominent case of 11 students from the University 
of California campuses at Irvine and Riverside who have been 
subpoenaed to a grand jury and persecuted for disrupting a speech by 
Michael Oren, Israeli Ambassador to the US. The government's attempt 
to conflate the anti-war and human rights movements with terrorism is 
a cynical attempt to capitalize on the current political climate in 
order to silence Palestinians and other people of conscience who 
exercise their First Amendment rights in a manner which does not 
conform to the administration's foreign policy agenda in the Middle East.

The issuance of subpoenas against the 23 activists has been met with 
widespread opposition and criticism across the country. Six members 
of the U.S. Congress, including five in the past month, have sent 
letters to either Holder or President Obama, expressing grave concern 
for the violations of the civil liberties and rights of the 23 
activists whose freedom is on the line. Three additional U.S. 
representatives have also promised letters, as thousands of 
constituents and other people of conscience across the U.S. have 
demanded an end to this assault on legitimate political activism and 
dissent. Over 60 Minnesota state legislators also issued a resolution 
condemning the subpoenas.

The Midwest activists have been expecting indictments for some time. 
The freezing of the Abudayyeh family's bank accounts suggests that 
the danger of indictments is imminent.

Take action Monday, May 9:
Call U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald at 312-353-5300.
Then dial 0 (zero) for the operator and ask to leave a message with 
the Duty Clerk.
Demand Fitzgerald
-- Unfreeze the bank accounts of the Abudayyeh family and
-- Stop repression against Palestinian, anti-war and international 
solidarity activists.

In solidarity,
The Committee to Stop FBI Repression and
The Coalition to Protect People's Rights

Freedom Archives
522 Valencia Street
San Francisco, CA 94110

415 863-9977

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