Filmmaker Makes Plea For Suicide Bomber Hero

pakistan_movie_051807.jpg

Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy, an award-winning filmmaker for the Discovery Channel, PBS and New York Times TV among other media outlets, is asking for help in an effort to save Ghufran Haider, a young Pakistani featured in Obaid Chinoy’s 2005 film Pakistan’s Double Game who saved hundreds of lives by stopping a suicide bomber in Karachi. Haider, who testified against the bomber, is in Dubai, but faces probable death in Pakistan if he returns.

Haider’s visa expires May 19.

Obaid-Chinoy’s memo:
pakistan_movie_051807.jpg

Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy, an award-winning filmmaker for the Discovery Channel, PBS and New York Times TV among other media outlets, is asking for help in an effort to save Ghufran Haider, a young Pakistani featured in Obaid Chinoy’s 2005 film Pakistan’s Double Game who saved hundreds of lives by stopping a suicide bomber in Karachi. Haider, who testified against the bomber, is in Dubai, but faces probable death in Pakistan if he returns.

Haider’s visa expires May 19.

Obaid-Chinoy’s memo:

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Date: Tue, 15 May 2007 07:42:23 -0400
From: Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy
Reply-To: SAJA DISC
To: SAJA DISC
Subject: [saja-disc] Urgent: Ghufran update

Dear All,

I wrote to you a few weeks back asking for your help … Ghufran Haider, the young man who stopped a suicide bombing in Pakistan and whose testimony led to one of the accomplices being awarded the death penalty in Karachi, needs help more than ever.

He is currently in Dubai, his visa expires on the 19th and he has nowhere to go … The UAE government is not granting him an extension. I am feeling hopeless now … He will fly back to Pakistan because he feels he has exhausted all his options. UAE does not recognize refugee status and they will arrest and deport him if he overstays his visa.

He has registered with UNHCR but its slow moving … If he does fly home on the 19th, he will be killed. Already his family are being harrassed daily, his brother has been threatened as has his ailing grandfather … To top it all off, he has no money in Dubai…He has only 4 days left …

I know that between us we can help him, so im reaching out to see if any of you can get him help from a third country soon … We must help Ghufran, his voice should not be silenced…

Please get in touch with me immediately…
Thank you
Sharmeen

Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy