Copyright © 2003-2011, Aishah Schwartz. Permission granted to circulate among private individuals, groups, or in not-for-profit publications in full text and subject title. All other rights reserved.

March 10, 2010

UPDATED: Response from the White House - Join Muslimah Writers Alliance in Asking President Obama to Support 'NO GAZA STUDENT LEFT BEHIND'

UPDATE: It only took 9 months...but I finally received a letter back from the White House (click on image to view full size): 



Muslimah Writers Alliance Launches
'No Gaza Student Left Behind'  Campaign
Press Release

Abbreviated version of letter included in Petition and Press Release - this version works in the emailthepresident online email platform.

Muslimah Writers Alliance Launches 'No Gaza Student Left Behind' Campaign Press Release -

June 15, 2010

President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20500
Comments: 202-456-1111
Switchboard: 202-456-1414
Fax: 202-456-2461

Re: Supporting Students in Gaza Seeking Exit Visas in Pursuit of Higher Education

Dear President Obama,

The ongoing saga of Gaza scholarship-holding and international university-enrolled students waiting and losing hope of being able to secure exit visas that would allow them to fulfill their educational aspirations, is yet another heartless byproduct of the illegal siege and embargo on Gaza.

In a spring 2008 report, Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) Economic, Social and Cultural Rights Unit Director, Khalil Shaheen, indicated that nearly 700 students had been unable to pass through either Egyptian or Israeli borders to secure exit visas needed to pursue the dream of a brighter future through educational opportunities offered abroad.

Now, as a result of the tragic events of May 31, 2010 when the humanitarian mission of the Freedom Flotilla from Turkey was deterred by Israeli gunfire, resulting in 9 fatalities, including one American, we have begun, at long last, to see an ease on the restrictions imposed by the Israeli blockade of Gaza, to include Egypt's opening of the Rafah border crossing to those with special needs, etc.

We call on you Mr. President to intervene on behalf of the students of Gaza, now, while the opportunity is ripe for inclusion of this issue on the current agenda of negotiations where lifting of the embargo on Gaza is concerned.

Students holding legitimate scholarship and university enrollment documentation have a right to guaranteed passage through open border crossings from both Israel and Egypt to secure exit visas to their future; and the future of Palestine.

While the list of options for lifting the embargo on Gaza continues to be ironed out, and humanitarian relief efforts between borders broadens, we hope you will embrace the opportunity to renew the faith placed in you by Muslims world-wide when you were elected as President of the United States.

The students of Gaza need your support. Can they count on you to intervene on their behalf in guaranteeing their right to free passage between Israeli and Egyptian borders to secure the exit visas needed to fulfill their aspirations for a brighter future?



1 comment:

  1. I Support this Petition.

    Naveed ul haq