From staff and wire reports

Members of the Ann Arbor Muslim Community and the American Civil Liberties

Union plan to hold a press conference Tuesday to discuss the detention of

a community leader who is on the board of trustees of an international

group that was raided by federal agents last week.

Rabih Haddad, 41, was detained by the Immigration and Naturalization

Service on Friday and was being held in an undisclosed location on a visa

violation, attorney Ashraf Nubani said today. INS officials said they

could not confirm or deny that Haddad was being held and said it was

unlikely any information would be released on the case. The FBI referred

all questions to INS.

Nubani said INS officials told him Haddad would be held without bond or a

detention hearing. He said those who pose a danger to the community or are

considered a flight risk generally are denied bond or a detention hearing,

but he said Haddad falls into neither category.

The 9:30 a.m. event Tuesday at the Ann Arbor Community Center, 625 N.

Main, will feature Nubani Tariq Colvin, a trustee of the Muslim Community

Association Kenan Basha, vice president of the Muslim Student Association

on campus Michael Steinberg, legal director of the ACLU of Michigan and

Haddad”s wife.

Haddad, a native of Lebanon now living in Ann Arbor, is on the board of

trustees of the Global Relief Foundation, a Bridgeview, Ill.-based group

whose offices were raided on Friday.

No arrests were made there. Two Global Relief Foundation offices in

Yugoslavia also were searched Friday by NATO-led peacekeepers and U.N.

police. A NATO spokesman said three people were detained there but gave no


The group”s assets have been frozen. U.S. Treasury Department spokesman

Tony Fratto said early Saturday that “there was coordinated action to

block the assets because the groups are suspected of funding terrorist


Messages left with the Global Relief Foundation today were not immediately


Nubani said Haddad”s detention came now because of the political climate

following Sept. 11.

“If he had any (immigration) issue he would have been picked up long ago,”

Nubani said.

Nubani said Haddad came to the United States in 1998 on a tourist visa

that has since expired. But he said Haddad applied for permanent residency

through a provision of the Lise Act passed by President Clinton in 2000.

Steinberg called Haddad “a beloved person in the Ann Arbor community,” who

has a wife and four children here.

“In my view the federal agents are destroying any trust that exists

between the law enforcement and the Arab community,” Steinberg said. “It”s

counterproductive for the federal government to seek assistance from the

Muslim community on one hand and then arrest their leaders on the other.”

Michigan is home to about 350,000 Arab-Americans. The Justice Department

sent letters to hundreds of southeastern Michigan men, mostly from the

Middle East, seeking to interview them in the terrorism investigation.

Officials have sought help from local Arab leaders in the interview


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