Masnet – March 23, 2004
U.S. Muslim Group Calls for Legal Moves Against Israel
WASHINGTON, March 23 (MASNET) - In the wake of Israel’s assassination of Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, the spiritual guide of Hamas, a U.S. Muslim group on Tuesday announced pursuing litigation to enforce violations relating to the sale of weapons by the U.S. that are used against civilians.
The Muslim American Society’s (MAS) Freedom Foundation said it was initiating a legal campaign in order to get Congress to enforce provisions of the U.S. Arms Export Control Act, which prohibits the use of U.S. weapons against civilian targets, on Israel.
At a press conference organized in front of the U.S. State Department along with various civil rights and religious organizations, MAS Freedom Foundation Executive Director Mahdi Bray said the organization was developing a legal team to take the issue to the courts.
“The extra-judicial assassination of Sheikh Yassin was a horrendous act of lawlessness conducted by the Israeli government, violating both international and U.S. law,” said Bray.
The civil rights and advocacy group said attorneys representing the case would include C. Peter Erlinder, a distinguished law professor from the William Mitchell College of Law in Minnesota and a former president of the National Lawyers Guild, and Myra Verhyden-Hilliard of the National Lawyers Guild and co-founder of the Partnership for Civil Justice.
In pursuing the legal track, Bray said the coalition of groups was calling on the U.S. government to renounce Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s government’s policy of assassinating Palestinian leaders. “American tax dollars are funding Israeli lawlessness,” he stated.
The group was joined outside the State Department by members of the coalition, including former congressman Reverend Walter Fountroy of the Civil Rights Roundtable, Imam Johari, Joe Grove of the Middle East Affairs Division of the Fellowship of Reconciliation, Reverend Grayland Hagler of the United Church of Christ, Myra Verheyden-Hilliard, and supporters from the ANSWER coalition.