Source: Helptheprisoners.org                                                                    17th November 2009

Background

Ziyad Yaghi is a 21 year old American citizen, from Jordan originally, residing in North Carolina whom has lived in the United States since the age of two. He has been accused of attempting to commit terrorism abroad by the United States government, in an indictment which appears to be based on an incorrect premise, namely that the US seek to infer that trips abroad were part of a terrorist conspiracy.

Ziyad visited Jordan in 2006, the country of his birth. Unfortunately the US Indictment appears to have misinterpreted this intention, and states instead that he was seeking armed conflict.

In 2007, the indictment alleges that he with others tried to engage in armed conflict in Israel, whereas both Ziyad and his friend Omar instead sought to visit the west bank and Masjid al-aqsa, one of Islam’s most
famous and revered sites and one which holds particular appeal for Ziyad as he is from Palestinian heritage.
The United States again seek to set a dangerous precedent in that if a Muslim wishes to visit the land of his ancestry, then this is viewed as suspect.

Now Ziyad is being held in an American jail, on the basis of two holidays that he undertook a few years ago.
The United States seem to draw conclusions and conspiracies when it is clear that this was just a young Muslim man who travelled as millions of young people do, seeking different cultures and experiences. It is discriminatory to assume that if a Muslim man engages in a trip to the Middle East that it is seditious conspiracy, yet if a non Muslim man were to do the same then it is soul-searching and adventure.

We also remind the United States of its obligations under the constitution, which state:-

“No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the
United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law;
nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

(14th Amendment of the US Constitution, Section One)

We would also remind the United States of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, article two,
which states :-

“Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind,
such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth
or other status. Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or
international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs, whether it be independent, trust,
non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty.”

We finally ask that the United States government cease the incarceration of this young man, and free him so
that he may resume his life and be re-united with his family.

Key Contacts

George Holding, District Attorney
U.S. Attorney's Office
310 New Bern Avenue, Federal Building,
Suite 800,
Raleigh, North Carolina
27601-1461
(919) 856-4530

Richard Burr, Senator
Wilmington
201 North Front Street
Suite 809
Wilmington, NC 28401
Phone: (888) 848-1833
Phone: (910) 251-1058
Fax: (910) 251-7975

Sample Letter

Dear [insert recipient's name here],

I am writing to you concerning Ziyad Yaghi, a 21 year old American citizen who is originally from Jordan.
He is accused of engaging in a terrorist conspiracy, an accusation that is easily refutable if one examines the
facts of the case.

Ziyad visited Jordan in 2006, the country of his birth, for entirely innocent reasons. Unfortunately the US

Indictment appears to have misinterpreted this intention, and states instead that he was seeking armed conflict.

In 2007, the indictment alleges that he with others tried to engage in armed conflict in Israel, whereas both
Ziyad and his friend Omar instead sought to visit the west bank and Masjid al-aqsa, one of Islam’s most
famous and revered sites and one which holds particular appeal for Ziyad as he is from Palestinian heritage.
The United States again seek to set a dangerous precedent in that if a Muslim wishes to visit the land of his
ancestry, then this is viewed as suspect.

Under the 14th Amendment of the US Constitution, Section One, it clearly states:-

“No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the
United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law;
nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

I would ask that you cease the incarceration of this young man, and free him so that he may resume his life and
be re-united with his family.

I look forward to hearing from you in due course.

Regards,
[insert name here]

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