***FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE***
Coalition Calls for End to Persecution of “Irvine 11” Students
Press conference and townhall to occur March 5
(Irvine, 2/25/2011) – A broad coalition of students, professors, and civic leaders will host a townhall this March 5, 2011 to call for the Orange County District Attorney’s to drop its recent criminal charges against 11 student protesters. The “Irvine 11” were responsible for a peaceful protest of a speech by Israeli ambassador Michael Oren at University of California at Irvine over a year ago, on February 8, 2010.
The students continue to face unjust prosecution well over a year after the incident despite already having been arrested without posing resistance, and severely disciplined by UC-Irvine. “The recent misdemeanor charges are excessive, unprecedented and have a chilling effect upon the exercise of First Amendment rights,” said community activist Marya Bangee. “The right to peaceful protest should be protected, not criminalized by the Orange County District Attorney.”
The coalition in support of the Irvine 11 has representation from a number of civic and religious leaders including over 100 UC Irvine professors, the Orange County ACLU, the Los Angeles National Lawyers Guild, and prominent rabbis, preachers, and imams.
More information, including full statements of support from coalition supporters, can be found at www.Irvine11.com.
What: Press conference and community townhall
Who: Speakers will include prominent scholars, attorneys, activists and community leaders.
When: Saturday, March 5, 6:30 p.m.
Where: Islamic Institute of Orange County Multipurpose Room, 1220 N State College Blvd, Anaheim, CA
Contact: Marya Bangee, Coordinator, Stand with the Eleven Campaign, 909.576.2713, firstname.lastname@example.org (Interviews with Irvine 11 attorneys available upon request.)