July 11, 2012
We’re very pleased to have learned today that U.S. consular officials in Singapore have issued a visa for Afghan Youth Volunteers mentor Hakim (Dr. Wee Teck Young) to come to the U.S. and participate in this summer’s U.S.-Mexico Peace Caravan being organized by Global Exchange against the drug wars and oil wars that do so much to tear our world apart.
This is a wonderful first step toward bringing over a few of the Afghan Peace Volunteers themselves, hopefully in time to participate in this caravan.
The consular official told Hakim his visa had been reconsidered because it was clear so many in the U.S. wanted him to be allowed to speak here. We sincerely thank the many individuals and groups who responded so swiftly and powerfully (and successfully!) to our request for letters and assistance in support of giving Hakim a visa.
Now we will turn our attention from Singapore’s U.S. consulate to the one in Kabul, where APVs Abdulai and Ali will soon apply for visas to travel with Hakim representing Afghan youth and the Afghan movement for peace on the Caravan. I am in Kabul now to assist them with this application.
As soon as we know the appointment dates for their interview at the consulate, we will again be appealing for your help in letting the consular officials know that U.S. people demand peace and a chance to meet with these brave, dedicated young people, working with them toward the solutions our leaders reject.
Thank you so much for your help thus far.
Here’s Hakim’s letter of thanks to you all:
Today, the 10th of July 2012, the U.S. Embassy in Singapore granted me a U.S. non-immigrant visa to visit the U.S. and to participate in the Caravan of Peace organized by Global Exchange.
I thank every one of you, especially Global Exchange and Voices for Creative Non Violence, for making this possible!
Your support letters to me and to the U.S. Embassies in support of my U.S. visa re-application encourage me deeply in my wish and work for global peace. Your acts of love show me that without extending our hand to one another, neither simple nor difficult steps towards a better, non-violent world could be taken successfully.
I ask that you would join me in hoping the same for Ali and Abdulhai, two core members of the Afghan Peace Volunteers, as they apply for their U.S. visas in Kabul, Afghanistan, to participate in the Caravan of Peace too.
In Afghanistan, where peace has become a ‘disappointing word’, Ali, Abdulhai and I have been dreaming about our ‘2 Million Friends’ Campaign. I can affirm and share with them my warm experience of your friendship.
Every hand of friendship is a hand for freedom!
Love and thanks!
Again, many thanks from all of us at Voices,
Kathy Kelly Co-coordinator, Voices for Creative Nonviolence