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Ossining Restaurant Owner Fights Cabaret Law in Court

WHITE PLAINS — A Muslim doctor and owner of a popular French restaurant in Ossining is suing town officials in federal court, claiming that attempts by the town to enforce its cabaret law are unconstitutional and discriminatory.

Dr. Syed Nayeem of New Rochelle took ownership of Maison Lafitte in February 2001. He said that shortly after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks the town began cracking down on events that involved live music.

Specifically, he cited a Sept. 14, 2001, Indian wedding party during which neighbors complained of noise and inappropriate timing, believing that it was a Middle Eastern celebration.

Nayeem said that the previous owner, Giovanni Susech, who ran the venue for more than 30 years, had never had a cabaret license nor was he required to have one. Nayeem also maintains that other restaurants in the unincorporated area of the town do not have a cabaret license and frequently have live music.

U.S. District Judge Stephen Robinson heard testimony from several witnesses yesterday, including waiters and musicians employed at the establishment for 20 to 30 years, who said that it wasn't until Nayeem took over Maison Lafitte that the trouble with having live music began...


U.S. Muslims Condemn Gaza Home Demolitions

(WASHINGTON, D.C., 10/15/03) - A prominent national Islamic civil rights and advocacy group today criticized the Bush administration’s assertion that the demolition of more than 100 home in a Gaza refugee camp was an act of “self-defense.” The recent demolitions by invading Israeli forces left more than 1,000 people homeless. Eight Palestinians were killed in the Israeli action.

This week, Amnesty International said the “deliberate and wanton destruction of homes and civilian property is a grave violation of international human rights and humanitarian law, notably of Articles 33 and 53 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, and constitutes a war crime.”


The Washington-based Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) said in a statement:

“One-sided and uncritical support for Israel’s collective punishment will only serve to encourage even harsher measures against Palestinian civilians by an out-of-control Israeli government. America cannot maintain a façade of neutrality while at the same time ignoring or justifying the illegal actions of the Israeli military.

“As recent studies have shown, turning a blind-eye to Israeli brutality against the Palestinian people is the main factor driving the deterioration of America’s image in the Muslim world.”

CAIR, America's largest Islamic civil liberties group, is headquartered in Washington, D.C., and has 16 regional offices nationwide and in Canada.


DC - Based Muslim group performs in London

DC based Native Deen ( will perform on October 20th, 2003, at Royal Albert Hall with Yusuf Islam (Cat Stevens) for “A Night of Remembrance,” a charity benefit for Islamia School.

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