Obama administration urged to support those seeking political reforms
WASHINGTON, April 28, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A prominent national Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization today condemned the killing and brutal repression of peaceful protesters seeking political reforms in Syria, Yemen and Bahrain.
The Washington-based Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) called on the Obama administration and Congress to support citizens exercising their universal human right to freedom of political expression in those nations.
Attacks on non-violent protests in the Middle East have resulted in hundreds of deaths. Twelve protesters were killed on Wednesday in Yemen's capital Sanaa. On Thursday, a military court in Bahrain sentenced four protesters to death. Human rights groups report that more than 450 civilians have been killed in Syria since protests against the regime began in March.
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In a statement, CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad said:
"We condemn the killing and brutal repression of those engaged in peaceful protests in Syria, Yemen and Bahrain. The right to peacefully protest in support of political reform is universal and not restricted to a particular culture or region. Our government should do whatever it can, in cooperation with the international community, to ensure that those who seek freedom and dignity are protected and that regimes that target protesters face appropriate sanctions."
Awad added that CAIR has been contacted by many American Muslims who fear for the safety of family members in the Middle East. He said CAIR appreciates the Obama administration's support for political reform in the region.
CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
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CONTACT: CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, 202-488-8787, E-Mail: [email protected]; CAIR Communications Coordinator Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787, 202-341-4171, E-Mail: [email protected]
SOURCE Council on American-Islamic Relations