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Ummul-Fadhl
07-12-2006, 12:58 PM
It takes little imagination to visualise life in a prison. The confined cell, the bare walls, the silence, and most of all, the feeling of isolation. Many have no family members in the UK and as a result they have become despondent and desperate. In one case, a detainee was actually seeking permission from a scholar to commit suicide until he began to receive letters from the public, which renewed his desire and motivation to live.

It is not enough that we feel sorry for what they are going through. It is not enough that we shed a few tears when we sit and think about what they are experiencing. Nor is it enough that we lay back and wait for others to take on the responsibility of reaching out to them.

We must not fail them at this critical time. We must hasten to comfort them, and support them at a time when they need us most. We must write letters that give them hope, help strengthen them and motivate them to persevere in remaining patient. We must be their link to the outside world, a link that shows that they have not been forgotten.

Such letter-writing campaigns have proved to be hugely successful – with the 8 Belmarsh detainees receiving 60 letters each in the week that the campaign was first launched and with Babar Ahmad receiving over 50 letters in his first week in prison.

Therefore we urge you all to make it a regular practice to write to at least one prisoner a week and to encourage all your family members and friends to do the same.

The letters can be as short as a paragraph, preferably written in your own handwriting as it is more personal, or if you do not have time to write a letter, you can buy a set of 'Thinking of You' cards. The content of the letters should be encouraging them to be patient, reminding them to have hope and that they have not been forgotten. This should not take more than half an hour and should not cost you more than £3. However, it may give hope to a prisoner for whom half an hour is like half a year.

Simple messages of goodwill are enough. Never advance your political opinion or discuss politics at all.

Clearly state the prisoner number otherwise the card will not reach the intended recipient. In some cases, the names of prisoners are withheld for legal reasons.

For more information on why you should write and for ideas on what to write, click here.

For a list of Prisoner Addresses, click here.
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Ameeratul Layl
07-12-2006, 01:00 PM
Salam,

Would the detainees actually recieve the letters? They are hardly fed...

Wasalam
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Ummul-Fadhl
07-12-2006, 01:02 PM
Sisters writing to the detainess:

1. If sisters feel uncomfortable with the idea of writing then please consult a person of knowledge you trust and act upon their advice. If you really feel you cannot write then perhaps the least you can do is to send gifts, or aayaat, ahadith, articles, poetry, du'as printed out, but anonymously (i.e. nothing written from yourself).

2. My personal advice would be to definately encourage the sisters to write but to take precautions, namely:

(a) Write anonymously with your gender not being apparent.They may just assume it is a brother and therefore there is no fitnah.

(b) Do not give your name or other personal details. Perhaps sign it from 'your sister' or choose a kunya. I think sometimes in naivete sisters have written quite a bit about themselves.

(c) Keep it formal but kind, and restrict your letters to reminding and inspiring, showing them that they are not forgotten.

(c) I would think it better not to leave an address - fitnah is more likely to occur with regular correspondence as familiarity occurs, not so likely with one off letters. The brothers can reply back to the brothers; the most important thing is that they receive the reminder and that they know people care. In some cases it is important that they have people to correspond with but some of the detainees have also found this overwhelming and found it hard to reply back to everyone.

(d) I personally believe that a potential problem is more likely to arise with the single brothers since they literally have NO ONE to visit them or communicate with. They have no family in the UK in most cases. Therefore their vulnerability is greater and they do not have a wife/other female family members who are already comforting them. Allahu 'alam but I believe it is less likely for a married brother to be affected if his wife is already visiting/calling/comforting him as well as possibly mothers/sisters. Therefore perhaps - merely my own opinion - it is better for the sisters to write to the married brothers, and encourage the brothers to write in particular to the single brothers.

(e) If after all of this the sisters still do not wish to write then perhaps the least they can do is to write letters to our postal address intended for the families of the detainees and we will pass them on.

However, it is very important to bear in mind if we completely discourage sisters from writing that it may result in the brothers losing what is essentially a lifeline for them. Most women feel intense gheerah for their husbands but you will probably find that the wives of these brothers themselves would encourage other sisters to write as they realise its importance. You cannot imagine the impact that the letters have had. Sisters are often at the forefront and can sometimes put the brothers to shame. We have even heard from prisoners themselves about the number of letters from sisters masha'Allah. I fear if the sisters were to stop writing altogether then perhaps the brothers would receive very few letters indeed.

And Allah knows best.
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Ummul-Fadhl
07-12-2006, 01:07 PM
Originally Posted by Ameeratul Layl
Salam,

Would the detainees actually recieve the letters? They are hardly fed...

Wasalam
Thank you for reading the thread. Yes ukhti, with regards the brothers in the UK (Woodhil and Belmarsh) we have reports from some of the prisoners, themselves, stating how happy they have been when recieving letters, etc. Read this and this for more information.

As for Guantanmo Bay, then the letters are very censored if they do, indeed get through which is rare, but I'd still encourage people to write as it shows the US Military there that the Muslims have not forgotten these detainees.

Sisters, please read the "Sisters writing to detainees," carefully.

Jazzaakamullaahu khairan.
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Ameeratul Layl
07-12-2006, 01:11 PM
:sl:

Okay.

JazakAllah sister.

I wish we could all just go the the prison and just help them out. It isn't fair. We are living a life of...luxuries. We have computers to interact, they have no one.

May Allah make them from the people of Janatul Firdous.
Ameen.

Wasalam
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julie sarri
07-12-2006, 03:03 PM
:sl: i have writern to a threw muslim detainees now i felt that i wanted to let them know we havent forgot them.When i write a letter i always put ayats from the quran and a threw words to let them know that the ummah still care about them i dont sign my name or say i am a sister so they dont know but atlest they get a letter :w:
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Ummul-Fadhl
07-12-2006, 03:59 PM
Originally Posted by julie sarri
:sl: i have writern to a threw muslim detainees now i felt that i wanted to let them know we havent forgot them.When i write a letter i always put ayats from the quran and a threw words to let them know that the ummah still care about them i dont sign my name or say i am a sister so they dont know but atlest they get a letter :w:
:w:

That's so nice to hear sister. May Allaah reward you - Aameen. Keep it up.

Also to everyone who is thinking of writing, please don't raise any politcal talk within the letters, etc., as the letters are checked thoroughly and scanned, etc.
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Djinn
07-12-2006, 11:55 PM
I don't know, I have doubts about this, I don't want to discuss things with a possible convicted rapist or murderer. Most of those prisoners brought upon themselves their isolation. But maybe I uphold the Sharia too much.
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Ummul-Fadhl
07-13-2006, 12:02 AM
Originally Posted by Djinn
I don't know, I have doubts about this, I don't want to discuss things with a possible convicted rapist or murderer. Most of those prisoners brought upon themselves their isolation. But maybe I uphold the Sharia too much.
Brother, these brothers are not up on murder charges, or rape charges. SubhaanAllaah. They are held without charge, without evidence in most cases under the so-called "Terrorism Law". I advise you to read the links above.

And visit www.stoppoliticalterror.com and www.cageprisoners.com for more information.

Jazaak allaahu khairan.
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Djinn
07-13-2006, 12:09 AM
Originally Posted by Ummul-Fadhl
Brother, these brothers are not up on murder charges, or rape charges. SubhaanAllaah. They are held without charge, without evidence in most cases under the so-called "Terrorism Law". I advise you to read the links above.

And visit www.stoppoliticalterror.com and www.cageprisoners.com for more information.

Jazaak allaahu khairan.
:sl:

Oh sister, you meant political prisoners, I previously thought you meant general convicted prisoners as I read your initial posts. Then that is encouraged. Sorry for the misunderstanding.

:w:
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searchingsoul
07-13-2006, 01:44 AM
I bet the US government enters the names of all people who correspond with these inmates into a database.
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Djinn
07-13-2006, 01:46 AM
Originally Posted by searchingsoul
I bet the US government enters the names of all people who correspond with these inmates into a database.
:sl:

Most likely, they are considered to pretain to terrorist organizations.

:w:
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searchingsoul
07-13-2006, 01:51 AM
Originally Posted by Djinn
:sl:

Most likely, they are considered to pretain to terrorist organizations.

:w:
Yes. My point exactly. I would be especially cautious. Didn't George Bush say, "You're either with us, or against us"?
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Ummul-Fadhl
07-13-2006, 12:37 PM
Originally Posted by searchingsoul
I bet the US government enters the names of all people who correspond with these inmates into a database.
If you believe that, who is stopping you from writing a fake name. You do not need to write your corresponding address neither.
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searchingsoul
07-13-2006, 05:47 PM
Originally Posted by Ummul-Fadhl
If you believe that, who is stopping you from writing a fake name. You do not need to write your corresponding address neither.

That's true but a letter without a return address seems especially suspicious.
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