June 27, 2006

US denies ever saying Tariq Ramadan supports terrorism

From today's US district court decision (PDF) regarding First Amendment issues in the denial of Tariq Ramadan's H1-B visa application:

The Government's position in this litigation directly contradicts DHS's August 2004 explanation for the revocation of Ramadan's H1-B visa, which was that "because of a section that applies to aliens who have used a 'position of prominence within any country to endorse or espouse terrorist activity.'" [...] Mr Knocke, the DHS spokesperson who made the August 2004 statement, is still an employee of DHS, and available to the Government, yet he has neither submitted an affidavit on the Government's behalf nor disavowed the statement attributed to him. Similarly, DHS has never renounced nor retracted it - except through this litigation.

Rather than explaining the DHS's statement or reconciling it with the Government's position in this litigation, the Government attempts to render this statement inoperative by explaining:

Plaintiffs allege that the July 2004 revocation was based on 8 USC 1182(a)(3)(b)(i)(VII) [the section of law restricting admission to the US for supporting terrorism] ... That allegation is incorrect. Mr Ramadan has never has never had a visa revoked, a visa application denied, or any other adverse action taken against him pursuant to that provision [...] Accordingly, any statement to the contrary that may have appeared in the media or may have been made by any Government spokesperson was erroneous.

That's in evidence given in court - where you get jail time for lying. So, the Department of Homeland Security officially denies ever saying anything negative about Ramadan.

[from Crooked Timber]

Posted 2006/06/27 19:35 (Tue)