The Strange Case of Adam Habib

In the Mail and Guardian (South Africa):


Earlier this year Habib again applied for a visa to the US, partly to enable him to address the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association in August. This time the US state department told him before his departure that his visa application would not be processed in time — despite Habib having made the application in May.

Last month the US government finally wrote to Habib about the matter. Charles Luoma-Overstreet, senior US consul in Johannesburg, told Habib: “I regret to inform you that … the department of state has upheld a finding of your inadmissibility under … the United States Immigration and Nationality Act.”

The letter included a copy of the section of the Act under which Habib had been denied entry. The section is headed “Terrorist Activities” and refers to “any alien who … has engaged in terrorist activity” or who “has, under circumstances indicating an intention to cause death or serious bodily harm, incited terrorist activity”.

These two definitions are part of a lengthy list that includes any “representative” of “a political, social or other similar group whose public endorsement of acts of terrorist activity the secretary of state has determined undermines United States efforts to reduce or eliminate terrorist activities”.

[H/t: Elke Zuern]