Georgia Muslims Coalition

According to the UN, “In the densely populated Gaza Strip, home to more than 2 million people, airstrikes have forced about 1.5 million people — about two-thirds of the population — to flee their homes”

OPEN LETTER to GA REPRESENTATIVES

November 11, 2023

From:   Georgia Muslim Coalitions.

To:  Senator Raphael Warnock, Senator Jon Ossoff, Representative Andrew Ferguson, Representative Harry Johnson, Representative Nikema William,  Representative Dr. Richard McCormick, Representative Lucy McBath, Representative Austin Scott, Representative Andrew Clyde, Representative Mike Collins, Representative Barry Loudermilk, Representative Rick Allen, Representative David Scott, Representative Marjorie Greene

Subject: Seeking your personal support for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza

We are a coalition representing about two hundred thousand Muslims in Georgia. Along with many members of the Christian, Hindu, and Jewish communities, we are reaching out to you about the grave situation in Gaza and ask you to call for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza.

We attach below a statement that was recently signed by elected representatives and members of the Muslim, Christian and Jewish community leaders.  They too asked you to call for an immediate ceasefire.

Taken together, we again convey our collective request for you to call for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza.

We condemn the loss of innocent human lives lost on October 7th. We also condemn the state-sponsored air and ground attacks by the state of Israel on Gaza and the West Bank for the last several decades. Since October 7th, Israel has cut off food, water, power, fuel and medicine to over two million Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.

As of Nov 10 2023, death toll in Gaza has topped 11,000, including 4,324 children.

Painfully, the death toll in Gaza is increasing daily and can be stopped by an immediate ceasefire.

Senior Israeli officials have declared that they have “removed every restriction” on the Israeli Defense Forces, that “Gaza won’t return to what it was before,” that they “will eliminate everything,” that “the emphasis is on damage and not on accuracy,” and “there will be no electricity and no water, there will only be destruction….you will get hell.” Israel’s President Isaac Herzog has declared that all Palestinians civilians are responsible for the actions of Hamas. Further, internationally brokered negotiations to release hostages have been rejected by Israel thus far.

The specific intent to destroy Gaza evidenced by these and many other statements and the staggering loss of life in Gaza amount to genocide under International law. International agencies including United Nations experts, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and B’Tselem agree that Israel is engaging in collective punishment on the people of Gaza and committing war crimes.

The restriction on food, water, medical supplies, electricity and fuel will lead to significant deaths in the coming days. Right now, hundreds of innocent men, women and children are dying slow, painful, and terrifying deaths trapped under rubble from bombed homes, hospitals, schools, shelters, churches, mosques and other structures. Lack of medical access will kill patients who are currently displaced and cannot get access to their routine medical needs (dialysis, cancer treatments, etc). Forced to drink unclean water, children are suffering from stomach illnesses, diarrhea and dehydration, and are expected to die en masse in the coming days. 

As you know, members of the Muslim community in the state of Georgia are law abiding citizens who excel in the areas of education, information and bio-technology, health care, hospitality, law enforcement, energy sector, information technology, agricultural, pharmaceutical and vaccine sciences, engineering, real estate, construction, transportation, and many other high-tech and growth producing areas that support jobs and add significantly to the economy of the state of Georgia.    

As concerned citizens who value justice and peace on a national and on a global scale, we are compelled to share our concerns with you collectively about the direction of the one-sided support that you have provided.  On behalf of our diverse collective, we present the below requests: 

  1. Demand an immediate Ceasefire: Call for an unconditional Ceasefire from all sides to the conflict.
  2. Bring U.S. Citizens home: Make it a priority policy position to bring all American Palestinians that are stuck in Gaza back to the U.S.
  3. End occupation for permanent peace: Prevent and reverse any temporary and permanent displacement of Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank.

The Muslim American community has worked tirelessly for decades to deepen its civic engagement with the belief that the United States, a champion of democracy and human rights, will play a critical role in fostering a fair and just resolution to the complex issues facing our country, including those that have plagued the Middle East for decades.         

We urge you as representatives of the Muslim American community to stand for justice and support a balanced approach that promotes peace. 

We are certain that the path forward cannot look like the past, as much damage has been done by our elected representatives.  

We remain committed to the principles of equality and justice and hope that we can find a path forward working with you and our national leadership to foster a more balanced and constructive approach based on International Law to bring peace to the Israeli and Palestinian people. 

We look forward to your response and understanding details of your policy position as outlined in above mentioned three points. We also look forward to having a select committee from our community meet with you, so that we can continue this very important conversation.  

Sincerely,

Georgia Muslim Coalition in partnership with people of other faiths

GA Muslim Coalition Signees

Al-Husna Masjid, Buford, GA
Al-Madina Masjid of North Atlanta, Norcross, GA
Albany Community Masjid
Anhar Institute, Atlanta, GA
Athens Masjid, Athens, GA
Atlanta Muslim Hub, Atlanta, GA
Bosnian Community Center of Georgia – Lawrenceville, GA
Burmese Rohingya Community of Georgia (BRCG)
Community Masjid (West End)
Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) GA
East Cobb Islamic Center, Marietta, GA
Ethaar USA, Clarkston, GA
Gainesville Islamic Culture Center, Gainesville, GA
Georgia Muslim Voter Project
Greenview Madani Center, Lawrenceville, GA
Gwinnett Islamic Center, Suwanee, GA
Hamzah Islamic Center, Alpharetta, GA
Hindus for Human Rights USA (HfHR)
ICNA Council for Social Justice
Indian American Muslim Council (IAMC) Atlanta, GA chapter
Indonesian Islamic Culture Center
Islamic Center of Columbus, GA
Islamic Center of Duluth, Duluth, GA
Islamic Center of Middle Georgia
Islamic Center of West Georgia, Douglasville, GA
Islamic Society of Augusta, Augusta, GA
Islamic Community Center of Atlanta, Fayetteville, GA
Jewish Voice for Peace, Atlanta Chapter
Justice America USA
LaGrange Islamic Center, LaGrange, GA
Macon Community Masjid, Macon, GA
Madina Institute, Duluth, GA
March 15th Forum Combating Islamophobia USA
Masjid Abu Bakr, Brookhaven, GA
Masjid Al Farooq, Atlanta, GA
Masjid Al-Quba, Buford, GA
Masjid Al-Furqan – West Cobb Islamic Center, Marietta, GA
Masjid Al Muminun, Atlanta, GA
Masjid Al-Rahman, Cumming, GA
Masjid Jafar, Johns Creek, GA
Masjid Momineen, Clarkston, GA
Masjid Omar Bin Abdul Aziz, Lilburn, GA
Masjid Soumaya, Peachtree Corners, GA
Masjid Suffa, Kennesaw, GA
Masjid Uthman, Dunwoody, GA
Muslim American Society, Atlanta, GA
Muslim Community Center, Peachtree Corners, GA
Muslims of USA
North American Manipur Tribal Association (NAMTA), USA
One Ummah Project, Atlanta, GA
Roswell Community Masjid, Roswell, GA
Savannah Community Masjid, Savannah, GA
Sir Foundation
Somali American Community Center
Valdosta Islamic Center, Valdosta, GA
Voices of Muslims