American Muslim Council founder arrested at airport


Issue: "Beyond the nightly news," Oct. 11, 2003

The American Muslim Council's founder, Abudurahman Alamoudi, is a naturalized and politically well-connected U.S. citizen who came to the United States from Eritrea and Yemen. He was arrested at Dulles Airport on Sept. 28 on charges of illegally accepting money from Libya and making numerous trips there on a Yemeni passport, in defiance of a U.S. ban on travel to that country. He insisted it all was a misunderstanding.

Among other things, Mr. Alamoudi has boasted that he was the first person the Pentagon authorized to nominate candidates to be Muslim chaplains. With Mr. Alamoudi's help, Abdul-Rasheed Muhammad became the military's first Muslim chaplain in 1993. He is based at the Army's Walter Reed Hospital.

Mr. Alamoudi helped to create the American Muslim Armed Forces and Veterans Affairs Council several years ago to continue the work of endorsing chaplains for the military. Based in Arlington, it is headed by Qaseem Ali Uqdah, an ex-Marine gunnery sergeant who worked at the Pentagon. Mr. Uqdah said he is refusing to take any reporters' calls about Capt. Yee until he has more facts, and then he will call a press conference.

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