(SOUTHFIELD, MI 8/13/2014) -- On Thursday, August 14, the Michigan chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-MI) will hold a news conference to announce the filing of a lawsuit on behalf of several Muslims challenging their placement in the government's Terrorist Screening Database - a watch list of "known or suspected terrorists" - without due process. The lawsuit will be filed in the United States District Court, Eastern District of Michigan in Detroit.
WHAT: Press Conference to Announce Lawsuit Challenging Watch Lists
WHERE: Outside of the U.S. Eastern District Court, 231 W Lafayette Blvd, Detroit, MI
WHEN: Thursday, August 14, 10 a.m.
CONTACT: CAIR-MI Staff Attorney Lena Masri, 248-390-9784, [email protected]; CAIR-MI Executive Director Dawud Walid, 248-842-1418, [email protected]
"The federal government has unjustly and disproportionately targeted American Muslims by routinely adding their names to the Terrorist Screening Database without affording them their rights to due process," said CAIR-MI Staff Attorney Lena Masri. "The lawsuit will challenge the government's broad and unchecked power to secretly label individuals as 'known or suspected terrorists' without concrete facts, but based on only a vague standard of 'reasonable suspicion.'"
CAIR-MI's lawsuit challenges the widespread government practice of placing names on watch lists without providing individuals with any notice of the factual basis for their placement and without offering a meaningful opportunity to contest the designation.
In a recent investigative report released last week based on leaked federal law enforcement documents, Dearborn, Mich., was ranked as second in the top five U.S. cities represented on federal watch lists.
The report stated that "at 96,000 residents, Dearborn is much smaller than the other cities in the top five, suggesting that its significant Muslim population - 40 percent of its population is of Arab descent, according to the U.S. Census Bureau - has been disproportionately targeted for watch listing."
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-MI Staff Attorney Lena Masri, 248-390-9784, [email protected]; CAIR-MI Executive Director Dawud Walid, 248-842-1418, [email protected]; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, or 202-488-8787, [email protected]; CAIR Communications Manager Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787, 202-341-4171, [email protected]