Thursday, May 04, 2006

An "Enemy Combatant"

Moazzam Beg was one of those classified as an "enemy combatant" by the United States. He was kidnapped ("arrested") by the Americans in Pakistan on January of 2002, and later transfered to the Guantanamo Gulag, he was released on January of 2005 - after being held on "suspicion" for three years.

According to the Caged Prisoners.Com website:

At 12, Moazzam went to stay with relatives in Pakistan where, his father says, his interests in humanitarian work began. He performed charity work in the Asian community and told his parents that he wanted to help alleviate the suffering of fellow Muslims. In June 2001, a year before his arrest, Moazzam Begg left his home in Birmingham and moved his wife and four young children to a new life in Afghanistan. There they established a school in a remote area and worked on a project to install water pumps.

In December 2001, following the United States-led operation to remove the Taliban regime, Begg told his relatives that he was moving his family back to Pakistan. He described the situation in Afghanistan as "unbearable". The family moved to an apartment in Islamabad to wait out the strikes. They planned to return when the dust had settled. But Moazzam was arrested and the family's funds - about £8,000 - were seized, leaving Sally and the children to fend for themselves in a country where they did not speak the language.
Since his release, Beg has been actively advocating on behalf of Muslim prisoners still being held at the Guantanamo and other American gulags.

Listen to a talk by Moazzam Beg on his experience at Guantanamo, Muslim activism, and more ... subscribe to the ihsan podcast, and/or listen to real audio web streaming here.

And check out Beg's book:

Enemy Combatant: A British Muslim's Journey to Guantanemo and Back.

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