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CAIR to Hold News Conference with Utah Imam on ‘No-Fly List’ After He Lands in Salt Lake City

CAIR to Hold News Conference with Utah Imam on No Fly List After He Lands in Salt Lake City 2(WASHINGTON, D.C., 6/17/17) – Later today, representatives of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) will hold a news conference at Salt Lake City International Airport with a Utah imam (Muslim religious leader) who was placed on the “no-fly list” and barred from returning to the United States from Kenya until CAIR filed an emergency lawsuit on his behalf. 

CAIR’s lawsuit was filed yesterday in the United States District Court for the District of Utah. Among the defendants are the FBI, the Terrorism Screening Center (TSC) and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). Parker & McConkie is co-counsel in the lawsuit.

WHAT: News Conference with Imam on ”˜No-Fly List’ Allowed to Return to U.S. After CAIR Files Lawsuit

WHEN: Saturday, June 17. The imam’s plane is scheduled to land at 7:10 p.m. local time in Salt Lake City. The news conference will be held at the airport when the imam gets off his flight. For details on the exact location, contact the CAIR attorneys listed below, who will take part in the news conference.

WHERE: Salt Lake City International Airport, 776 N. Terminal Drive, Salt Lake City, UT 84122

CONTACT: CAIR National Litigation Director Lena Masri, 248-390-9784,; CAIR Senior Litigation Attorney Gadeir Abbas, 720-251-0425,

Background on the Case:

Imam Yussuf Awadir Abdi, an American citizen and imam of Madina Masjid in Salt Lake City, Utah, traveled to Kenya to bring his wife and children to the United States. All members of his family are either United States citizens or have permission to enter and reside in this country.  Imam Abdi was added to the no-fly list after he left the country and was therefore prevented from boarding his flight home.

As a result of being denied boarding, Imam Abdi was unable to return home in time for all of the last 10 nights of the holy month of Ramadan — the most important nights of the month — when he is expected to lead prayers each night at his mosque.  The last 10 nights of Ramadan began on the evening of June 15.

A motion filed in conjunction with the lawsuit sought an emergency court order compelling the United States to allow Imam Abdi to board a flight and return to his home in Utah.

CAIR has assisted a number of other American Muslim citizens who have been stranded overseas by government actions.

CAIR is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

La misión de CAIR es mejorar la comprensión del Islam, fomentar el diálogo, proteger las libertades civiles, capacitar a los musulmanes estadounidenses, y construir coaliciones que promuevan la justicia y la comprensión mutua.

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CONTACT: CAIR National Litigation Director Lena Masri, 248-390-9784,; CAIR Senior Litigation Attorney Gadeir Abbas, 720-251-0425,; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726,

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