Community News (V11-I49)
Pakistani American doctors urged to develop homeland
NEW YORK, NY–Pakistanâ€™s UN Ambassador Abdullah Hussain Haroon Saturday urged medical doctors of Pakistani descent to make their full contribution to American economic and political life as well as play their part in the development of their motherland, the Associated Press of Pakistan reported.
Speaking at the annual dinner of the Association of Physicians of Pakistani descent of North America (APPNA), he lauded the services rendered by Pakistani-American doctors, and hoped that their fast-growing organization would emerge as a major force in the country.
The dinner, held in Uniondale on the Long Island, a New York suburb, was largely attended by APPNA members from all over the United States. Also present were U.S. Congressman Ed Town and Nassau County executive Tom Suozzi.
The newly-elected President of APPNAâ€™s New York Chapter Dr. Asif Rehman welcomed the guests and enumerated the associationâ€™s support- activities in Pakistan, especially during the 2005 devastating earthquake in northern Pakistan and in easing the suffering of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) from Swat.
In his remarks, Ambassador Haroon traced the development of U.S.-Pak relations from their inception, saying Pakistan had always given diplomatic, political and strategic support to the the United States without any quid pro quo.
He especially referred to the support provided by Pakistan following the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. But he regretted that Pakistan was forgotton when the Soviets were forced to pullout of Afghanistan.
â€œStill, we have remained good friends of the United States,â€ the ambassador added.
Lilburn mosque plan denied
GWINNETT, GA–The Lilburn City Council voted down a plan last Wednesday night that would have allowed for a major expansion of a local mosque.
The mosque is on Lawrenceville Highway at Hood Road.
Residents argued the development would go against zoning laws designed to protect neighborhoods.
â€œIt doesnâ€™t matter what it was going to be, it didnâ€™t belong in that area. It wasnâ€™t zoned for that,â€ said Ilene Stongin-Garry, whoâ€™s against the expansion.
Attorney for the mosque said denying the project is a violation of the congregationâ€™s first amendment right.
â€œThey want to expand as other churches, as other religious institutions have been able to expand in your community. To deny them this right in unlawful,â€ said Doug Dillard, the mosqueâ€™s attorney.
Dillard vows to fight on, heâ€™s going to take the case to federal court.
Arabic classes in more high schools in Chicago
CHICAGO, IL–The Chicago public schools will expand its Arabic-language program to three more high schools, thanks to a three-year federal grant of 888,000 U.S. dollars announced earlier this month. Already, Arabic is offered at three Chicago high schools and is also offered at seven Chicago elementary schools and about 2,000 students take Arabic in Chicagoâ€™s schools, according to official sources.
The new federal grant will fund the expansion to three additional high schools in Chicago that have yet to be identified, the sources said.
The expansion will be enhanced by the use of technology-based instruction using the safari-blackboard virtual technology that will allow a teacher at one school to simultaneously offer a virtual class at another school as well. The teacher will change schools every two weeks so students will have personal interaction with a teacher.