Open letter to President Barack Hussein Obama

Mr. Barak Hussein Obama New president of United States of America Mr. President; Less than twenty-four hours of your installation, herewith please find my open sent you after your election. Ashraf Ramelah  His Excellency Barack Obama President Elect of the United States of America Your Excellency;  On behalf of “Voice of the Copts” a human rights organization, I wish to express my warm congratulations to you, Your Excellency, on your resounding election victory as the President-elect of the United States of America. Your election carries with it hope for millions of your country’s men and women as much as it is for millions of people worldwide. Furthermore, I would like to congratulate every American citizen who voted for you, people who believed in what you have said, and what you have promised to achieve, not only to your fellow Americans but to the whole world. I also hope that those who did not vote for you may later come to know the good job that all of us are hoping to see you achieve. Your election is a great event that proved to the whole world what a great country America is; it was very gratifying to watch it elect a person of color to the highest political office in the land.  What is amazing, is the fact that this could happen in America, a country with such a tragic racial past, thus showing how fine and noble the American democracy is, and how it could produced such a new and hopeful experiment; an experiment that would give incentive and hope to people who are still presently living  under ppression.     In several of your election speeches, you emphasized the changes that you are planning to carry out once you became President. All of us are hoping that changes will take place, particularly in the United States’ foreign policy, mainly towards those countries that do not respect or allow even the barest of human rights to their minorities.  It might be difficult to comprehend for citizens living in a free society like yours, that there are still other countries, where people are still treated as second class citizens, or as slaves to the majority. All what they are asking for is just equal treatment, nothing more and nothing less. Citizens of the most powerful country in the world who chose you are looking for radical changes inside and outside of America. We all know the world became one big place due to globalization, modern methods of communications and transportation, and we all know how an American financial problem could have a negative economic domino effect on the whole world. However, some of the world’s rulers are not interested in other non-financial issues which could have a more far-reaching and devastating effect on its citizens. It is the influencing role of the USA, particularly in protecting basic human rights around the world that everyone is aspiring for.  Sadly, there are countries which finance terrorism, others give them safe haven or training camps, however, the saddest issue of all is that in the twenty first century the international community is still unable to enforce basic human rights in various countries of our planet;  no one is even allowed to condemn them.  I believe that, human rights have to be one of the most important tasks of your foreign policy, Your Excellency, including one of the most fundamental which is the one related to freedom of Faith.  Religious beliefs are a personal relationship between a man and his maker, and no one has any right to interfere in this relationship. In some police states in the Middle East there are millions of Christians who are facing daily threats just because they live in a country where Muslims are a majority. I am sure you are aware of that, only last week in Iraq, it was reported that more than 150,000 Christian families were forced to leave their country. In Sudan, the blood of innocent people has been running for years, the same picture is found in Lebanon and other countries of that region.  In the United States, our new President Elect is an African American and it did not make any difference to the American people whether he is of American or African descent. In Egypt a Copt cannot be a military pilot or a high ranking police officer. In the United States the Afro-Americans are approximately 12% of the population, and they were able to have one of their sons to become elected as the 44th US President. In Egypt, the Copts who are the descendent Egyptian and are more than 15% of its actual population still not allowed to hold any governmental post of importance. As you can see, Your Excellency, I did not say to become a President.  In the United States, you are allowed to build as many synagogues, churches and mosques as one wants, in Egypt, you need the authorization of the governor (until a few months ago it was the President himself) to be allowed to repair, without exaggeration, a church’s bathroom tap. Furthermore, stores owned by Copts are robbed; teenage girls are raped and forcibly converted to Islam, churches destroyed and profaned, and all this and more is happening, while the police are just an onlooker. A Muslim can kill a Copt, while the most he can get is a one-year suspended sentence, such as the verdict which was passed last month.   Kids are being taken away from their Coptic parent to join the Muslim parent that the Egyptian family judges believe to have the ‘better religion. What about the new regulation that is being pushed forth by the President of the Medical Council to forbid organ transplants between Copts and Muslims??? Your Excellency; You pledged to make changes when you are elected, and now you have achieved your goal and have become the new President of America, We are counting on your support to resolve the Coptic dilemma. We, ‘Voice of the Copts’ as a human rights organization, are committed to helping our Coptic people in Egypt and other countries, to get their basic human rights, in order to allow them to regain their lost dignity and live like human beings. We will ceaselessly fight for them until they can go out to pray without fear of being attacked, and until their girls can walk safely everywhere without fear of being abducted.  Our work is against regimes that are only interested in themselves and on how to hold on to power; those regimes that are not interested in their minority citizens, their human rights or their suffering. We will also never ever give up our fight until the Copts have had their full citizenship rights which they are entitled to enjoy in their own land.     We wish you, your Excellency, great success during your tenure as President of the United States of America and we express the hope that a greater attention of the focus of the new administration may be dedicate to helping the millions of oppressed people in Egypt and around the world to live their life with dignity.    Cordially, Dott. Arch Ashraf Ramelah Prsident Voice of  the Copts

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