AAI, ADC and MPAC Meet with Attorney General Holder to Discuss Profiling; Encourage Engagement

For Immediate Release

Arab-American Institute
Contact: 

Rebecca Brown 202-429-9210 ext. 23

AAI, ADC and MPAC Meet with Attorney General Holder to Discuss Profiling; Encourage Engagement

WASHINGTON -  Executives of the Arab
American Institute (AAI), American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee
(ADC), and the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC), met with Attorney
General Eric Holder on Monday (January 25) to discuss issues of concern
to the Arab American and Muslim communities.

Leaders spoke
with Attorney General Holder about several controversial policies
developed under the 2003 Department of Justice Guidance on Profiling,
which include several loopholes allowing for widespread profiling based
on race, ethnicity, religion and national origin. Among the topics
discussed were the 2008 Investigative Operational Guidelines (DIOGs),
disclosures in the 2010 Inspector General Report on FBI data collection
of identified "communities of interest", the use of informants in
terrorism cases, and the National Security Entry-Exit Registration
System (NSEERS), and PATRIOT Act reauthorization.

Representatives
from the Arab American Institute (AAI), the American-Arab
Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC), and the Muslim Public Affairs
Council (MPAC) stressed the importance of continued dialogue and
additional efforts to promote partnerships between local communities
and law enforcement.

James Zogby, President of the Arab
American Institute (AAI) said: "It is the national security loophole in
the 2003 Attorney General guidelines on profiling that has provided the
legal cover for many of the policies put in place during the previous
Administration, including the round ups of thousands of Arab and Muslim
immigrants targeted for 'special registration' and the 2008 Mukasey
guidelines for the FBI. As has been repeatedly demonstrated, profiling
is ineffective, wastes precious law enforcement resources, and
alienates American communities eager to assist in keeping our country
safe and secure."

Mary Rose Oakar, President of the
American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC), said: "We urged the
Attorney General to repeal the 2008 Department of Justice FBI
Guidelines that were put into effect in the last month of the Bush
Administration and asked him to assist in repealing the NSEERS program,
which targets young men from Arab and Muslim countries."

Salam
Al-Marayati, Executive Director of MPAC, said: "Problematic polices
over the past 8 years have lead to a chilling effect in our community.
We encourage the DOJ to address some of these very pertinent issues to
ensure respect for the rule of law and security policies that work"

AAI,
ADC, and MPAC appreciate the opportunity to address these concerns with
Attorney General Holder and look forward to working with the Department
of Justice on substantive policy reform.

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Please direct media inquiries to the contacts listed below:

Rebecca Brown, Arab American Institute, rbrown@aaiusa.org or (202) 429-9210

Nawar Shora, American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee, nshora@adc.org (202) 244-2990

Haris Tarin, Muslim Public Affairs Council, haris@mpac.org or (202) 547-7701

 

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Founded in 1985, the Arab American Institute (AAI) is a nonprofit organization committed to the civic and political empowerment of Americans of Arab descent.  AAI provides policy, research and public affairs services to support a broad range of community activities.

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