- U.S. Department of Homeland Security AND U.S. Department of Justice
- United States of America
This petition concerns the case of Foad Farahi, a committed community bridge-builder, health advocate, student, and interfaith dialogue proponent who has become an integral part of Miami-Dade community fabric over the past 15 years. Though his contributions have been great and many, sadly he has had to deal with numerous issues including arrest, detention, coercion by agents of Homeland Security, harassment by ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement), threats from the FBI, and (most importantly) the encroaching prospect of being deported to a country (Iran) within which he has never resided and within which he feels a bona fide fear of political persecution. Especially since time is of the essence, we ask that you read this petition, sign it, add your support to Foad’s cause, and tell all your friends & family to sign this as well. The great thing about change is that everyone can be a part of it—by signing this petition & spreading the word about it you become a part of that change that will ensure that America remains just.
WHO IS FOAD FARAHI?
Foad has lived and studied in this country for at least 15 years, since December 30, 1993. As a student in the United States, he has obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry and biology and a Master’s degree in Public Health at Florida International University. He is currently working toward Graduate Degrees in Nutrition and Traditional Chinese Medicine. During this time he has also been involved in his community and his faith serving as an Imam for his mosque and a leader in the Muslim American Community in South Florida. He is the Imam at a Masjid in North Miami Beach, FL.
WHAT HAPPENED TO FOAD?
He applied for political asylum in 2002 but was charged as removable for failing to maintain his student status. Foad was seeking political asylum based upon a real fear of persecution if deported to Iran. As a pro- American Sunni imam from America, the persecution in a country known to jail American journalists, dissidents, and religious minorities is far from a stretch. Nevertheless on October 23, 2007, just prior to his scheduled individual hearing before the Immigration Court to argue his case, Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents subjected Foad to threats of arrest, incarceration, baseless prosecution, and false accusations of being an alleged “terrorist.” These threats led to the involuntary and coerced withdrawal of his asylum application before the Immigration Court. On the date of his intended asylum hearing, Foad was ordered by Immigration Judge Holliday to “voluntarily” depart to Iran, a country he has never seen in his life. Because he was threatened into withdrawing his asylum case, his rights to due process and equal protection were violated. Foad pursued a motion to reopen his case before Judge Holliday (who would later be dismissed from the bench), that was subsequently denied. He is close to exhausting his appeals but is currently fighting his case in the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals.
Mr. Farahi is a person who loves this country and is committed to its well-being, growth and continued prosperity. He has never participated in any activity antagonistic to the United States, and certainly cannot be considered a terrorist.
His only goal is to remain lawfully in the United States to pursue his legitimate claims for asylum and/or withholding of removal. He has a well-founded fear of persecution due to the possibility of his forcible removal to Iran, a country in which he has never lived, has no ties and where his Sunni religious beliefs and pro-American politics would make him a prime target for government repression.
As such, please join us in taking a stand for justice for Foad Farahi and requesting the following:
1) A meeting with Attorney General Eric Holder and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano
2) that Foad be granted his fair day in immigration court to argue his asylum case
** The great thing about change is that everyone can be a part of it—by signing this petition & spreading the word about it you become a part of that change that will ensure that America remains free & just **
Want to do more? Individuals & Organizations are invited to join the Foad Farahi Justice Coalition! EMAIL US @ FREEFOADFARAHI@GMAIL.COM