Friday, October 01, 2010

Press Release: Vancouver activists gather to protest FBI raids on anti-war activists in the Midwest

Here's a shout out to my home town and the awesome activists there. Thanks, everybody!

(Vancouver, October 1, 2010) On Friday October 1 at 4:15 pm until 5:30 pm Vancouver peace and justice activists will gather with banners on the Evergreen Blvd I-5 overpass to protest the FBI home raids and other investigations of anti-war activists in the Midwest one week ago.

Vancouver for Peace and other Vancouver residents will be protesting in solidarity with the anti-war and international activists whose homes were recently raided by the FBI. On Friday, September 24, 2010 the FBI raided seven houses and an office in Chicago and Minneapolis in an attempt to collect evidence of 'material support' of terrorism. The FBI also handed subpoenas to testify before a federal grand jury to eleven activists in Illinois, Minnesota, and Michigan. The FBI emphasized that no arrests are expected. However, a spokesperson for the FBI added that ”they were seeking evidence related to ongoing Joint Terrorism Task force investigation," according to the New York Times.

Vancouver peace and justice activists believe the Federal Bureau of Investigation raids threaten the First Amendment and suppress civil liberties. These local activists believe FBI spying on humanitarian advocates and harassing anti-war and solidarity activists should be denounced.

“These raids were aimed at those who dedicate their time and energy to protest U.S. wars of choice and to support the struggles of the Palestinian and Colombian peoples against U.S. funding of military and security forces that violate their human rights, “ said Mike Ellison of Vancouver for Peace. “The systematic and simultaneous raids by FBI officials in multiple locations is alarming and appears to indicate an attempt to stifle and silence the political speech of people of conscience through fear tactics. We stand with our fellow activists in the Midwest and call on the Department of Justice and the FBI to return people’s property and stop this grand jury investigation.”

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