Senator Norm Coleman admonishes Saudis on treatment of Somalis

Wouldn’t you think Republican Senator Norm Coleman of Minnesota had enough to do these days trying to win reelection that he wouldn’t have time to yell (not really yell, more like tsk tsk) at a Saudi King?  Cleaning out alerts just now I came across this copy of a recent letter  in which the Senator asks the Saudis to not treat the Somalis so badly.

In October we reported on the story here, where the RICH ISLAMIC government of Saudi Arabia was deporting Somali Muslims back to their African hell hole.  Where is the much ballyhooed Muslim charity?

Here is Coleman’s letter in its entirety.

His Majesty King Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz Al-Saud
c/o Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia
601 New Hampshire Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20037

Your Excellency,

As the Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on Near Eastern and South Central Asian Affairs, I wish to extend my greeting and good wishes during Islam’s four sacred months.

Today, I write to draw your attention to the situation facing many Somalis currently in Saudi Arabia. These immigrants fled a country where there is no functioning government, where violence rages and humanitarian needs are great.

Specifically, I am concerned about both the humanitarian conditions facing Somalis currently in Saudi Arabia, as well as their fate if forcibly returned to Somali during these difficult times. Through my contacts with the Somali community in Minnesota, home to the largest Somali immigrants in the U.S., I have been made aware that a plane of Somali deportees recently landed at the Mogadishu airport. Further, I have been informed that many more Somalis are currently being detained in various jails in Saudi Arabia while en route to Somalia, including a number of mothers with children. I am concerned about reports of poor conditions in these facilities.

As you know, protecting the refugees and safeguarding their needs is aligned with international law. Respectfully, I ask you to consider halting deportations to Somalia so long as the country remains dangerous and unstable. I also request that you look into improvements to the detention facilities where these individuals are being held.

Your Excellency, I deeply appreciate the steps that your government has taken to support the reconciliation of the Somali people. I urge you to continue your support for peace in Somalia and an alleviation of the humanitarian crisis there.

Thank you very much for your time and consideration of these concerns .


Norman Coleman

Do you think His Majesty has written back yet?

I don’t know much about this blog, but for a good laugh watch the Somali Parliament Chair Fight video linked in the upper left.

Gitmo Prisoners could be refugees in Portugal and Ireland

There has been a NIMBY (not in my back yard) message sent  (not even in a prison in my back yard) from many locations in the US should President Obama close the military prison at Guantanamo Bay and possibly release some of the Muslim prisoners who have been there for years.

Well, look here, Portugal and Ireland may accept them as asylees.   Good luck with that.

IRELAND SHOULD follow Portugal’s lead in agreeing to grant refugee status to exonerated Guantánamo detainees who cannot return home due to the risk of torture or other mistreatment, Amnesty International has said.

Amnesty’s Irish section was responding to Portuguese foreign minister Luis Amado’s commitment to accept for resettlement Guantánamo inmates cleared for release. Mr Amado outlined the move in a letter to his EU counterparts to mark this week’s 60th anniversary of the signing of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Referring to US president-elect Barack Obama’s stated wish to close the detention centre, Mr Amado argued that the EU should “send a clear signal of our willingness to help the US government resolve this problem” by granting asylum to exonerated detainees who fear persecution if returned to their countries of origin.

Another food stamp fraud bust, this one in Ohio

Note to new readers, we have covered immigrant perpetrated food stamp fraud since a store in our Maryland county was raided last year.

Here is a report on today’s case.  You gotta laugh!   Debbie Schlussel has noted on other occasions that the name of the alleged fraudster is often left out of a news story if the name is associated with immigrants from Muslim countries.   Check this out! 

The Ohio Department of Public Safety’s (ODPS) Ohio Investigative Unit executed search warrants Wednesday at a liquor permit establishment in Cleveland and a house in Westlake seizing $384,676 on Dec. 10 after a lengthy food stamp fraud investigation.

Investigative unit agents executed the warrants Wednesday at the A&F Food Market, 2044 W. 65th St., Cleveland, and at the permit holder’s residence in Westlake.

A total of 26 liquor permit violation notices were issued at the A&F Food Market for improper conduct, illegal possession of electronic benefit transfer (EBT) cards, trafficking EBT cards, illegal use of EBT cards, theft offense, drug possession, drug paraphernalia possession, receiving stolen property and illegal possession of Women, Infant and Children coupons.

[a spacing gap is evident here where the person would normally be identified]

Agents seized $23,496 in cash at the market and $361,180 at the residence.

The man’s name is Abdel Salem Ali and he has been running this store for 20 years.  You can listen to a report below describing the search and note that his grown son and daughter were arrested.

Westlake home raided, cash seized in food stamp case
State investigators have seized more than $380000 from a Westlake man targeted in a food stamp fraud case. Agents from the Ohio Department of Public Safety served search warrants Wednesday morning at Abdel Salem Ali’s Cleveland store

Here is our archive on Food Stamp Fraud cases.

North Carolina: No jobs for refugees, volag cutting back

North Carolina is state # 14* with no jobs for Iraqi refugees, and possibly other refugees are having a difficult time too,  according to this report in Yes Weekly

Sayed (director of refugee programs at the local Islamic Center) has developed dozens of case files for Iraqi refugees who began arriving in Greensboro and High Point last spring. She said many of the Iraqi refugees have been unable to secure employment. Sayed questioned why resettlement agencies continue to bring new refugees when the job market is so tight. Ivory of Lutheran Family Services said her agency has dramatically scaled back the number of refugees it plans to place in the Carolinas next year in light of current economic conditions.

So, if our refugee numbers are to remain high and Refugees International is telling their supporters to tell Obama to expand the Iraqi refugee  numbers to over 100,000 (Bush Admin. proposed 17,000) this fiscal year, and this volag (non-profit resettlement agency) is saying they are cutting back, where will they all go?

Read the rest of the article which is mostly about the Mosque helping feed and clothe Burmese refugees, but you will see it is not clear that they need the help.

* The thirteen other states we have written about so far are Arizona, Maryland, New Hampshire,Virginia, New York, Michigan, Ohio, Georgia, Idaho, Connecticut, New Mexico, California and Washington.

Note to AP reporter Matthew Lee:   If you ever get around to writing about this side of the Iraqi refugee issue, the unhappy jobless side, instead of being the public relations arm of Refugees International, you can go to our Iraqi refugee category and find all the states that have frustrated unemployed Iraqis.