Released 13 January 2007  By DRUM
TAKE A FEW URGENT STEPS IN THE NEXT 48-72 HOURS to...
STOP THE DETENTION & DEPORTATION OF A WHOLE FAMILY ARRESTED BY IMMIGRATION TUESDAY MORNING AS AN INTIMIDATION TACTIC!
At 5:30am Tuesday morning, January 9th, upwards of ten ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) violently arrested an entire Pakistani family - all active members of DRUM - from their home in Queens, just hours after a federal court judge sentenced their twenty-four year old son, Matin Siraj, to 30 years in prison for (false) terrorism charges. The family has been in jail in New Jersey since Tuesday. The racist 'War on Terror' is destroying South Asian and Muslim communities and families. The migra is destroying all immigrant communities! We must unite and act to put an end to it!
For more coverage of Siraj Matin's case, read Democracy Now' s interview with the attorney
( http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=07/01/10/151203 )
WHAT WE NEED YOU TO DO:
WRITE a letter in support of the family addressed to the Hon. Judge Tadal, and FAX it to 718-205-3037
We will collect all letters, and the lawyer will present them to the judge on the day of the hearing. The letters should indicate support for the family, politely request leniency from the judge, and that the family should be "released on their own recognizance or on reasonable bond."
CALL ICE at 973-645-3666 (Deputy Director - Ext.5010, or Supervising Deportation Officer - Ext.5017), or FAX at 973-645-6124 (leave messages if necessary)
1. Demand that the entire Siraj family be released on recognizance or a reasonable bond (ICE officials have stated that that the father was picked up because his asylum case appeal was denied, but in fact his appeal is still pending and the mother & daughter still have not had there day in court on asylum)
2. Demand that ICE, NYPD, and other enforcement agencies stop targeting immigrant communities, in particular Muslims, Arabs, and South Asians
CALL Warden Charlotte Collins at Elizabeth Detention Center at 908-352-3776, Press *2, Press 242# (leave messages if necessary)
1. Demand that Elizabeth Detention Center and ICE officials provide continuing medical care and medication for the mother and father for their ongoing, severe medical conditions
2. Demand that the Siraj family be kept together, and that the family be allowed to visit and see each other in the facility. Currently, the father is unable to see the mother and daughter who are in a separate room
3. Demand that the family be able to directly communicate and visit their son, Matin, who is being held at Metropolitan Detention Center, and both detention facilities pro-actively facilitate direct communication between members of a traumatized family
Support the family by contributing to their legal and support fund
For checks over $50 – tax-deductible – Send checks made out to our fiscal sponsor: The AJ Muste Memorial Institute, and write "DRUM – Siraj Family Fund" on the memo line. For checks under $50 – non-deductible – Make checks out to DRUM. Mail checks to DRUM, PO Box 720187, Jackson Heights, NY 11372
COME show support for the mother & daughter's Bail Bond hearing by demonstrating outside Elizabeth Detention Center before, during & after the hearing
1. The hearing is at 1pm on Tuesday, January 16th at 625 Evans Street, Elizabeth , NJ 07201
2. DRUM is organizing a bus or vans (with limited seats) to take allies to the detention center: please plan to donate to help cover costs. CALL Kavitha, 718-216-0756, to reserve seats or for day-of info, OR e-mail: email@example.com
*We plan to be back in NYC at approximately 3-4pm
Bus Meeting times:
10am at DRUM, 72-26 Broadway, Jackson Heights: EFVGR to Roosevelt; 7 to 74th St
11am, Midtown: 327 W. 42nd St between 8th & 9th Ave at Burger King.
Desis Rising Up & Moving
72-26 Broadway, 4th Fl., Jackson Heights, NY 11372
Tel. (718) 205-3036 |Fax (718) 205-3037 | firstname.lastname@example.org | www.drumnation.org
PRESS RELEASE January 13, 2007
Bond Hearing Set for Entire Queens Family Arrested as Intimidation
For questions, contact: Fahd Ahmed, DRUM (940) 391-2660
MEDIA IS INVITED TO ATTEND A COMMUNITY SUPPORT DEMONSTRATION FOR THE FAMILY IN ELIZABETH, NJ ON TUESDAY, JANUARY 16TH, AT 1PM
One week after their home was raided, and they were arrested, two members of the Siraj family have an immigration bond hearing set for Tuesday, January 16th, at 1pm at Elizabeth Detention Center.
At 5am on the morning of January 9th, 2007, upwards of ten ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) officers raided the Queens home of and arrested three members (father, mother, and daughter) of the Siraj family, a tight-knit Pakistani family that has been caught up in the U.S. "War on Terror's" most recent act of racial and religious profiling. Tuesday's deplorable raid on the home of an innocent family is amongst dozens of other targeted, prejudiced sweeps across the country that are tearing Muslim, Arab and South Asian communities apart. The arrests occurred less than 12 hours after their young son, Shahawar Matin Siraj, was sentenced to 30 years in prison for alleged terrorism-related charges emerging from a clandestine NYPD-paid informant's entrapment. The father said that after the sentence was given, they "went to sleep at night and woke to this nightmare."
ICE officials are currently falsely reporting that the family was arrested on immigration-related charges and that the father's appeal for an asylum case was "denied." The reality is that the father's appeal is still pending in the Second Circuit Court and has not been decided, and that the mother and teenage daughter do not have any immigration cases or deportation orders pending against them. Given the high-profile media attention on their son's case, in which there were many underhanded legal irregularities and rights violations, these arrests are being seen by the community as an attempt to silence and make an example of the family through harassment. The family maintains that their son was ensnared by an NYPD informant, evidence of which the court did not properly consider, resulting in an unfair trial and sentencing. The family has filed a notice of appeal for their son's case. The mother said that "this is a systematic targeting of Muslims, a political attack on a peaceful family—and we have been caught in the middle of it. We have not gotten any justice and will continue to speak the truth. We will continue to struggle with patience and courage."
Both the father and the mother have ongoing and severe medical conditions, and require medical care in a safe and healthy environment. All three family members are currently being held at Elizabeth Detention Center in Elizabeth, NJ , where the mother and daughter have not been allowed to see or talk to the father. By separating the family in three different places, "they are breaking our family apart," said the mother from the Detention Center.
DRUM, as a community based organization that works with Muslim and South Asian immigrants and has seen the targeting of this community before and especially after 9/11, is calling on all concerned individuals and organizations to support the immediate release of the Siraj family. DRUM, alongside countless civil and human-rights organizations and concerned citizens will continue to expose the ongoing injustices of the "War on Terror" against this family and all targeted communities.