We Got Hakim a Visa. Ali and Abdulhai Need Them Too.

Together with our allies (Voices for Creative Nonviolence, Fellowship of Reconciliation, Global Exchange), we flooded the State Department with emails asking them to grant a visa to Hakim, a leading peace activist in Afghanistan.  When Hakim re-applied, the U.S. Consulate reconsidered his case and they granted the visa.

But Hakim is a mentor to the Afghan Peace Volunteers.  When he visits the United States, at least two of those youth should come with him.  Abdulhai and Ali (in photo at right) care deeply about their country.  They are not a risk to stay in the United States (as the State Department fears).  The only risk is that they will tell us what our occupation of their country is doing, and what they are doing to promote nonviolent alternatives.

Hakim expresses his gratitude and tells Abdulhai and Ali's moving stories here.

Please sign this petition, which will be delivered to the U.S. State Department.  Please ask everyone you know to do the same.

To Hugo Llorens, Assistant Chief of Mission, Embassy of Afghanistan

Dear Mr. Llorens,

Re: Approval of visa application to the U.S. for two Afghan Peace Volunteers, both of whom are named Abdul Ali: distinctive nicknames being Abdulhai and Ali. They both have confirmed appointments at U.S. Embassy for interviews regarding their application. Their interview dates are on August 5th 2012 at 8 a.m.

Over the past three years, Abdulhai and Ali have befriended dozens of people from the United States who travelled to Afghanistan because of their keen interest in the remarkable work for peace and justice that these young men are accomplishing.

Many are impressed by their intention to sustain the interethnic friendships and creative projects which they have initiated in the past three years. They will also need to be in Afghanistan after ten days so that they won’t fall behind in their studies.

Ali and Abdulhai are running an after-school program, having encouraged young street vendors to re-enroll in elementary schools, as well as organizing tailoring classes for Afghan women.

On 10th December, 2012, they will be joined by Dr. Sima Samar, chair of the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission, and Nobel Peace Laureate Mairead Maguire.

Ali and Abdulhai find their social security in simple living, sharing resources, and seeking to serve others.

I hope that they will be able to join, as invited guests of Global Exchange’s Caravan for Peace, in the multistate tour across the United States, travelling with the group from September 2 – 12.

I support their applications for visas.

Their return to Kabul will be eagerly awaited by their fellow Afghan Peace Volunteers, and they will be accompanied to and from the United States by Dr. Wee Teck Young, their Singaporean mentor who is a respected international peace-builder.
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