By Kris Hamel
Published May 18, 2011 3:41 PM
A victory was won May 10 by activists fighting FBI repression when the Twin Cities Federal bank reversed its action and released funds held in accounts by Hatem Abudayyeh and Naima Abudayyeh of Chicago. The family’s accounts were frozen by TCF on May 6; the TCF branch manager asserted the Bank Security Act prevented him from releasing any assets.
Hatem Abudayyeh is a Palestinian community leader and executive director of the Arab American Action Network. He is one of 23 anti-war, Palestinian and international solidarity activists subpoenaed by a federal grand jury in Chicago after FBI raids last September.
Michael Deutsch, attorney for the Abudayyehs, said, “In my opinion, the bank did not act out of the blue. I suspect that the FBI and U.S Attorney investigation caused the bank to overreact and illegally freeze the Abudayyehs’ banking accounts that had been there for over a decade.” (fightbacknews.org, May 10)
The Committee to Stop FBI Repression reported in a May 16 email that people across the United States called U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald in Chicago and the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control to demand the return of the couple’s money and an end to the repression and harassment of activists.
All 23 of the targeted activists remain steadfast in their position that they will not appear before a grand jury.
Hatem Abudayyeh will be a featured speaker at a May 21 meeting in New York City, “Resisting State Repression: Confronting Police and FBI Repression of Communities of Color & Oppressed Nationalities.” Sponsored by the New York Committee to Stop FBI Repression, Al-Awda NY and DRUM (Desis Rising Up and Moving), the event starts at 7 p.m. at 56 Walker St. in lower Manhattan.
For more information on this and other anti-repression activities, see www.stopfbi.net.