Bring Ali Home sign now

The Honorable Tom Ridge
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Washington, D.C. 20508

Dear Secretary Ridge:

We, the undersigned, ask you to take action on the pending I130 petition for Ali Yaghi.

Bureaucratic snafus and lawyer error that were merely frustrating through September 10, 2001, became a nightmare for Ali Yaghi and his family after September 11, 2001. The Yaghi family had a life they loved in Albany, N.Y., where Ali, a hard-working U.S. immigrant, had built a thriving pizza business.

Ali applied for asylum in the late 1980s, a multi-year process that was not completed until 1999. In 1992, he married Shokriea, an American citizen and, in 1996, because the asylum process was taking so long, he applied for status as a family member of a U.S. citizen. The INS decided in 1999 that Ali would be given a green card as soon as his asylum case was closed out but, unbeknownst to the Yaghis, his lawyer failed to file time-sensitive papers to do so, preventing the issuance of his approved green card. Following his arrest in November 2001, on immigration violations, Ali was detained and imprisoned, without charges, for nine months in the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brroklyn, N.Y.. In June 2002, he was deported to his native Jordan, destroying his family emotionally and financially.

His wife, Shokriea, has an I130 petition asking that Ali be given a visa as a member of the family of a U.S. citizen. She has requested that his pending I130 petition be forwarded for action to the U.S. embassy in Jordan. This request has not been acted upon by the Bureau of Immigration and Custom Enforcement. We ask you to act on the petition, paving the way for his return to the U.S., to be reunited here with his American wife and their three U.S.-born children.

CC: Senator Clinton
Senator Schumer
Representative McNulty

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Lupe ScottBy:
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Tom Ridge, Homeland Security

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