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Former Boston Palestinian Activist Faces Continued Harrassment (english)
by Dan Keshet
Email: dkesh, channel1, com
07 Nov 2002
Modified: 13 Nov 2002
Former Boston Palestinian activist Jaoudat Abouazza says he has
been faced with further attempts at interrogation stemming from his
forty-day detention in Massachusetts jails--this time in Canada.
At one PM on Saturday, August third, Abouazza says, six law enforcement
agents, some from the FBI and some from local Canadian law
enforcement, visited him at his workplace at a pharmaceutical plant in
Monreal. From there, they took him to a local police station, where
they interrogated him on and off for twenty-four hours.
The questions Abouazza recalls are similar to the ones he recalled
following his interrogations while detained in Massachusetts: "Are you
affiliated with Osama bin Laden?", "Are you suicidal?", "Do you know
any terrorists?", and "Who called for a demonstration to protest your
arrest?". Abouazza, who does not speak English well, says he refused
to answer the questions without a lawyer and a translator. He says he
was released at around 1 PM on Sunday, August 4. Immediately
following release, he returned to his work, where he was on a trial
period, but told that he was no longer a candidate for a permanent
Abouazza, twenty-four years old, was arrested on the night of
Thursday, May 30, 2002 in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Administrative
maneuvers kept him in jail over the weekend, during which time the FBI
attempted to interrogate him without a lawyer. He was released on his
personal recognizance on June 3, then immediately taken into the
custody of the United States Immigration and Naturalization Services
(INS), on charges of overstaying the six months a Canadian citizen is
allowed in the United States without a visa. The INS placed him in
the Bristol County jail in southern Massachusetts, where he charges
that he had four of his teeth forcibly extracted, one of them
partially so. (He says that he now faces expensive oral surgery to
repair the damage to the partially-removed tooth.) In a July interview,
the offices of
Bristol County sherriff Thomas Hodgson called the charges
"preposterous", saying that Abouazza had only one tooth removed in a
legitimate dental procedure which he had requested, and that he had
generally enjoyed his stay at the jail. In addition, Bernie Sullivan,
Hodgson's Public Relations officer, suggested that Abouazza was a
"pawn of some organization" trying to "peddle influence."
On June 27, US immigration judge Leonard Shapiro granted Abouazza
"voluntary departure," a special rule under US law which allows for a
detained immigrant to waive all rights to object to the facts of the
case in exchange for immediate departure and no record of a
deportation. The ruling gave the INS thirty days to comply or appeal.
On July 3, Abouazza says he was transferred out of Bristol County jail
to Plymouth County jail, also in Massachusetts. Officials at Plymouth
County jail would neither confirm nor deny that he had been at the
facility, citing privacy laws, but did say that they rent jail cells
to the INS.
At that facility, Abouazza says, he began refusing meals when he was
not granted a phone call to alert friends and family of his new
location. He claims that in response he was put in an empty solitary
confinement cell for twenty-four hours without clothes, causing him to
vomit repeatedly. On July 5th, he says, he was asked to sign a
confession stating that he was a terrorist, willing to commit suicide
for the cause of Palestinian liberation. On July 10th, Abouazza was
brought to Montreal, where he was handed over to Canadian authorities.
He has been in general good spirits since his return to Montreal,
where he believes that people are generally more sympathetic to Arabs
and Palestinians. He has resumed his activism, joining the Society
for Palestinian Human Rights (SPHR) in Montreal, and taking part in a
September 9 protest of Israeli politician Benjamin Netanyahu at
Concordia University in which many protesters clashed with riot
police. Asked if he would ever come back to the United States, he
says that he would, but only to thank those who helped him out while
he was detained--or for a really good rally. Still, the thought makes
him audibly nervous: "Every time I move my tongue in my mouth", he
says unprompted, "I remember what happened to me."
Friday, 15 Nov. 2002, 8 a.m. Goverment Ctr. (english)
by James Zappia
(No verified email address)
13 Nov 2002
Heard last night, Tuesday (6:30-8:00 a.m. 88.1 http://www.wmbr.org) on Radio with a View (during their fund raising show...):
Amer Jubran hearing / support this Friday (above day and time).
At the John F. Kennedy Federal Building, Government Center, you guessed it, in Boston.
Needless to say this "case" does not qualify as corporate news even if he ends up be forced to leave the U.S. without his molars.
Also there seems to be some conflation between a person getting arrested on 'violations of INS statutes' or exercising rights freely as can potentially all citizens with origins and stances of A.N.S.W.E.R.
I try to understand it both historically and currently and I do believe when someone attends a protest or any gathering organized by someone else this does not imply that you become a homogeneous group of people that agree on every issue historicaly and in future goals.
It's not say you don't react and decide for yourself if what was called a process for peace becomes a declaration of hate. Also, I don't see how ideas about patriotism unless ot solely gives preference or is a perspective from nation-states rather than global as in standards not profits, international rising in importance.
I missed reference by Barry Crimmins (http:///www.barringcrimmINS.com) about patriot proclaimations are akin to being in favor of breathing.
I prefer it being how one defines (or as Howard Zinn and flag) it be it caring about veterans who are struggling with aftermaths of their experiences (or The 1940's House: I thought it was Thirteen / WNYC but clearly a British show to see how even not being directly bombed can impact you or FSRN reference below, family in Basra...
habit of HTML (english)
(No verified email address)
13 Nov 2002
In the habit of adding links encloded in so I forget it's not necessary to do here so if you do refernce any of the links after you click you'll have to remove the >" from the URL but you all knew that!
http://www.confused.org (I won't forget again yea sure)