Wednesday, October 19, 2005

October 22: A Day of Remembrance for Ashraf Al-Jailani

October 17, 2005


Dear Members of the Press and friends of Ashraf:

1095 days and counting:

This October 22 (next Saturday) will mark the completion of the 3rd year of Ashraf's detention in a remote Pennsylvania prison pending his deportation from the USA.

That's a total of 1,095 days in detention for a misdemeanor conviction subsequently pardoned by the Governor of Ohio.

For three years now, Ashraf has suffered quietly in jail, while his three children and his wife suffer hundreds of miles away. This so that the Department of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security ostensibly keep our nation safer from this "terror suspect." For those who have been following this perversity of justice, you know that the Department of Justice have never ever formally gathered enough evidence to charge Ashraf with any crime.

Last December, Ashraf was granted a waiver from removal based on a well-founded fear that he would be persecuted and tortured if he would be removed to Yemen. The USICE has also appealed that decision, and it remains pending before the Board of Immigration Appeals. Likewise, Ashraf's petition for Habeas Corpus relief has been filed and is pending before the Federal court in Pennsylvania.

Ashraf's detention is possibly the longest (that we know of, anyway), of any of the post 9-11 detainees to date. Most others have already accepted removal (deportation) and have been dispatched to their home countries. Those who couldn't - or wouldn't - go were secretly "rendered" overseas on CIA and DOJ-chartered flights for questioning using illegal methods.

Ashraf would have been gone too, except he chose to fight his deportation because he could not bear to be separated from his family. His youngest still waits for the evening when his "baba" - as he fondly called Ashraf at age 2 - will return home to play soccer with him. Meanwhile, Ashraf's daughters learn to ride bikes on their own, as Michele struggles to keep the family's heads above water.

Last December, Ashraf was granted a waiver from removal based on a well-founded fear that he would be persecuted and tortured if he would be removed to Yemen. The USICE has also appealed that decision, and it remains pending before the Board of Immigration Appeals. Likewise, Ashraf's petition for Habeas Corpus relief has been filed and is pending before the Federal court in Pennsylvania.

To commemorate Ashraf's three years in jail, the Greater Cleveland Immigrant Support Network has organized a "Day of Rememberance for Ashraf Al-Jailani."

Details are below.

We encourage you to attend.

Thank you for your time. Thank you for caring.

Respectfully,

Farhad Sethna
330-376-6766
(Attorney for Ashraf Al-Jailani)

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