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Contact: Cindy Roberts
February 17, 2010
AFA calls on elected officials to press state department on behalf of detained missionaries

The American Family Association (AFA) issued a call today for the congressional delegations in Idaho, Kansas and Texas to put public pressure on the State Department and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to demand the release of detained Baptist missionaries in Haiti.

The missionaries are being held in squalid conditions even though the Haitian judge overseeing their case has called for their release.

The State Department continues to insist that this is an internal matter and the U.S. must not intervene. To this point, it appears that none of the elected representatives of these detainees have publicly called for their release.

AFA president Tim Wildmon said, "These American citizens are being kept in a bug-infested cell, sleeping on a concrete floor, even though the judge has determined that they had no intent to break Haitian law. Their motives were simply to help desperate Haitian children. It's inexcusable for our government to allow them to be kept in such inhumane conditions, and it is unacceptable for their elected representatives to remain silent while they are suffering this kind of abuse. We're calling on the missionaries elected representatives to issue loud and public calls demanding that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the State Department secure their release."

Bryan Fischer, AFA director of issues analysis added, "Some of these elected officials are sitting on their thumbs and excusing it by saying that the U.S. should not interfere in an internal Haiti affair. That's pretty lame. We just sent 20,000 soldiers into Haiti to maintain what semblance of order they've got. If that's not internal interference, what in the world is? We're sending hundreds of millions of dollars into Haiti, and the thanks we get is for U.S. citizens to be caged like animals. The U.S. could send a detachment of soldiers down there and have them out of that hellhole in the next half hour. If Haiti won't let them go, tell their leaders we'll rescue our citizens and then pull our soldiers and our aid out of Haiti."

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