Washington, D.C. - May 3, 2023 - The Shia Muslim Foundation announced today that its Executive Director, Rahat Husain, met with key Biden administration officials, including Stephen Keith Benjamin, Director of the Office of Public Engagement; Douglas Emhoff, Second Gentleman of the United States; Ambassador Susan Rice, Director of the United States Domestic Policy Council; and Joshua Geltzer, Deputy Assistant to the President and Deputy Homeland Security Advisor for the National Security Council. The meeting took place at the White House on May 2, 2023.
Mr. Husain presented the concerns of the American Muslim community regarding the immigration challenges faced by imams, sheikhs, and religious scholars invited to the U.S. for religious events. He highlighted the obstacles, such as unexplained visa denials and years-long delays in administrative processing, that hinder the ability of these religious leaders to serve the spiritual needs of the American Muslim community.
The Executive Director emphasized the reliance of American Muslims, particularly the Shia community, on international scholars due to the limited number of resident Shia scholars and imams in the U.S. He expressed the community's concerns about the impact of these immigration issues on their ability to practice faith, celebrate holy days, and foster spiritual growth.
The Shia Muslim Foundation appreciates the opportunity to engage with the Biden administration officials and looks forward to collaborating with the White House to address these pressing issues and protect the religious rights of the American Muslim community.
About the Shia Muslim Foundation
The Shia Muslim Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to advocating for the rights and needs of the Shia Muslim community in the United States. The Foundation strives to promote a better understanding of the Shia faith, foster interfaith dialogue, and work collaboratively with various stakeholders to address the challenges faced by the Shia community.