(OKLAHOMA CITY, OK, 11/16/12) –- The Oklahoma chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-OK) today said that Oklahoma-born, U.S. Muslim Air Force veteran Saadiq Long will make a third attempt to return to the United States on November 19.
Long has been trying to return to Oklahoma since April 2012 to visit his terminally-ill mother and has been barred in his previous attempts, apparently because he is on a government no-fly list. Long attempted to board a flight on November 8 and was denied boarding.
Video: U.S. Muslim Vet Again Barred From Flight to Visit Sick Mother in Oklahoma
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Long’s sister started an online petition via Change.org to aid in her brother’s return home next week. His sister is hoping that her brother will make it home in time for the holidays.
SEE: Change.org Petition for Saadiq Long
“Thanksgiving is not about what religion you are or the color of your skin,” said Anderson, “It’s about spending time with your family, and we want Saadiq home with us next week. My mother’s failing heart makes this an even more urgent request that our family be allowed to spend time together as soon as possible.”
CAIR Oklahoma is working with Long and U.S. government agencies to ensure that he will be able to return home on his November 19 trip.
“Although it has been a challenging experience on both sides, we have not given up hope that Saadiq Long will soon be reunited with his mother in time for Thanksgiving,” said CAIR-OK Executive Director Adam Soltani. “Long has maintained a positive and optimistic spirit even in the face of difficulties, and it is our hope that this third attempt to return to Oklahoma will succeed.”
CAIR, a Washington-based Muslim civil rights organization, has dealt with a number of similar cases nationwide in which Muslim citizens are prevented from returning to the United States or faced government coercion when seeking to return home.
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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-OK Executive Director Adam Soltani, 405-248-5853, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; CAIR-OK Operations Coordinator Jenell Mapp-Maynard, 405-415-6851, E-mail: email@example.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org