Friday, June 5, 2009

Pro-Peace Muslim threatened the day President Obama speaks to the Muslim world of peace

June 4, 2009
CONTACT: Richard L. Benkin, Ph.D.;

Pro-Peace Muslim threatened the day President Obama speaks to the Muslim world of peace

Dhaka, Bangladesh—The Bangladeshi government resumed its harassment of pro-peace journalist Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury, despite repeated promises not to. Intelligence agents have been staking out his house “past few days,” according to neighbors; and the family cornered a man insisting that he was from Bangladesh’s DGFI intelligence service. “Sergeant Rafiq” was ask when Choudhury left and returned home, his license plate, and so forth. Choudhury called numerous government agencies, but only one replied, denying it had sent anyone. With crimes by persons claiming to be from the government increasing daily in Bangladesh, the family was concerned. Ultimately, however, the agent admitted being charged with investigating five dissidents, including Choudhury. Bangladeshi’s Washington Embassy agreed that our concern was especially justified Choudhury’s tenuous position. Such visits often are meant as threats in Bangladesh. As of tonight, the police refuse to take any action in the matter or even accept Choudhury’s complaint.

The Muslim world’s only self-proclaimed Zionist, Choudhury was arrested in 2003 by government agents and Islamist forces after advocating relations with Israel, religious equality, and exposing the rise of radical Islam in Bangladesh. He was tortured and held for seventeen months and only released after strong pressure by human rights activist Dr. Richard Benkin and US Congressman Mark Kirk (R-IL). The government then charged Choudhury with the capital offenses of sedition, treason, and blasphemy “for praising Christians and Jews,” regularly admitting that the charges are baseless and maintained to appease radical Islamists. Though the government has not produce a single piece of evidence for the charges, and its sole witness keeps refusing to appear, the government continues the case in an effort to intimidate him into Choudhury and to drain his financial resources. As one DC insider put it, “They’ve made the process the punishment.”

The life of this courageous dissident journalist is in danger unless the world renews the protests it lodged during previous governments.

For further information, contact Dr. Richard Benkin at the telephone or email above.

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