Global media is reporting on the arrest of U.S. Muslim Brotherhood activist Syed Ghulam Nabi Fai, accused by the FBI of acting as an agent for the Pakistani intelligence service involved in secret lobbying efforts inside the U.S. According to a Hudson N.Y. report:
Relations between U.S. and Pakistan grow more and more tense. In July, the FBI arrested Syed Ghulam Nabi Fai, a Kashmiri-born activist accused of participating as an agent for the Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) in secret lobbying efforts inside the U.S.. Fai, an American citizen living in Fairfax (Virginia), was born in the Indian-administrated Kashmir to a Muslim family, amd moved to the U.S. to complete his PhD in mass communication in 1977. Along the years, he became a known Kashmiri separatist leader, allegedly advocating Pakistan’s position. Kashmir is a region claimed by both Pakistan and India since it was partitioned in 1947. After his arrest on July 19, Fai was released on a $100,000 bond and is now in house detention, under electronic surveillance, pending trial. He faces up to five years in prison shoulkd the court decide to convict him. In 1990, Fai founded a non-profit organization, the Kashmiri American Council (KAC), at the moment when Pakistan and India were at the verge of a war over Kashmir. He was charged along with Zaheer Ahmad, his American-Pakistani associate (who was not arrested and is believed to be in Pakistan), for obtaining illegal funding for KAC from Pakistan. The United States Attorney at the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, Neil Macbride, said that Fai is accused of a “decades-long scheme with one purpose: to hide Pakistan’s involvement behind his efforts to influence the U.S. government’s position on Kashmir. His handlers in Pakistan allegedly funneled millions through the Kashmir Center to contribute to U.S. elected officials, fund high-profile conferences, and pay for other efforts that promoted the Kashmiri cause to decision makers in Washington.”
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According to an online profile of Dr. Fai:
Dr. Fai is the founding chairman of the California-based World Peace Forum. He is the Chairman of the International Institute of Kashmir Studies. He is also the Chairman of the Kashmiri American Foundation & the London-based Justice Foundation. Dr. Fai is also the Member of the Board of Director of Istanbul-based the Union of the NGOs of the Islamic World. Dr. Fai holds a Ph.D. in mass communications from Temple University, Pennsylvania, and an M.A. from the Aligarh University in India. As a student leader, he represented the International Federation of Student Organizations at many international conferences. In 1986, he addressed the United Nations Conference in New York on Technical Cooperation Among Developing Countries. At Temple University, he was elected as the President of the International Students Association and Director of Temple University, Graduate Students Council. He was also a member of the Temple University President’s Students Advisory Council. He was also elected as the General Secretary of the Temple University Space & Funding Committee. Dr. Fai was elected as the “President of the Muslim Students Association of the United States & Canada” between 1984-1988, whose membership exceeded 73,000 in 1988.
During his studies at Temple University, Dr. Fai was associated with Ismail Faruqi, one of the early leaders of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood and who was instrumental in the idea for establishing the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT), an important part of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood. Both the Muslim Student Association (MSA) and the International Federation of Student Organizations (IIFSO) were critical components of the US and Global Muslim Brotherhood during the time Dr. Fai was active. According to a recent report on the first Gaza flotilla by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JCPA), the Union of the NGOs of the Islamic World is a key part of the Turkish Muslim Brotherhood network that was instrumental in developing and executing that flotilla. In addition, Dr. Fai has been a regular speaker at a number of conferences of the Islamic Society of North America, another part of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood.
As might be expected given Dr. Fai’s role in the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood, the American Muslim Taskforce on Civil Rights and Elections immediately issued a statement of support for Dr. Fai:
The American Muslim Taskforce on Civil Rights and Elections (AMT***), a national coalition of major Muslim organizations, today issued a statement to express its commitment to the people of Kashmir and their peaceful struggle for self-determination and to reaffirm Dr. Ghulam Nabi Fai’s constitutional rights and the presumption of innocence afforded to every person in the United States. Having carried out a heroic struggle under most difficult circumstances, Dr. Fai has become the globally-recognized face of Kashmiri public diplomacy. AMT said in a statement: “Dr. Ghulam Nabi Fai, a respected community activist and leader, has a right to the presumption of innocence and the right to a competent legal defense, the cost of which will require community support. “Equally important for us is to ensure that the cause of Kashmir finds a peaceful expression in the United States. All the constitutional protections afforded any American citizen must remain available to Kashmiri-Americans and to all those who support the Kashmiri right to self-determination. “Let no one be deluded into thinking that the present restrictions on the Kashmiri American Council (KAC) will mean banning of advocacy on behalf of the long-suffering people of Kashmir. “We urge President Obama to ensure that the recent pro-India shift in U.S. policy, clearly manifested in Secretary of State Clinton’s speech in India, will not be used by law enforcement agencies to stifle national debate about the future of Kashmir.
The AMT is a coalition of almost all the major U.S. Muslim Brotherhood organizations as documented in a Hudson Institute report including the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA), the Muslim American Society (MAS), the Muslim Student Association, the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), and the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC)