French name street to honor Philly cop killer Mumia Abu Jamal
May 16, 2006
Pam Africa and Julia Wright. Mumia's lawyer,
Robert Bryan, on right.
Pam Africa and Leslie Jones of the Inter national Concerned Family and Friends of Mumia Abu-Jamal (ICFFMAJ), as well as Ramona Africa of the MOVE organization, were among the speakers at the ceremony.
Julia Wright, an African American writer living in Paris as well as a member of ICFFMAJ, spoke and provided a French trans lation of a statement from Abu-Jamal.
Also among the speakers was Abu-Jamal's lead attorney, Robert Bryan.
Other members of the U.S. delegation included Sundiata Sadiq, vice president of the Ossining, N.Y., NAACP; Suzanne Ross, Free Mumia Coalition of New York City; Arthemio Perez, Peoples Video Network; Lallan Schoenstein, Millions for Mumia/ International Action Center; and Gary Wilson, Workers World managing editor.
Paris suburb names street for Mumia Abu-Jamal
PHILADELPHIA - A street in a Paris suburb has been named in honor of Mumia Abu-Jamal, who was convicted of the 1981 murder of a Philadelphia police officer.
"In France, they see him as a towering figure," said Suzanne Ross, co-chair of the Free Mumia Coalition of New York City, who was part of an April 29 ceremony to dedicate the Rue Mumia Abu-Jamal in the city of St. Denis.
Ross said the street is in the town's Human Rights district, which includes Nelson Mandela Stadium.
Abu-Jamal, a former radio reporter and member of the Black Panther party, was sentenced to death in 1982 for the shooting of 25-year-old Daniel Faulkner. He has maintained his innocence. His writings and taped speeches have made him a cause celebre among Hollywood activists, foreign politicians and some death-penalty opponents who believe he was the victim of a racist justice system.
The 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals last year agreed to consider three counts of Abu-Jamal's appeal, allegations that there was racial bias in jury selection, that the prosecutor gave an improper summation and that a judge in a previous appeal was biased.
Faulkner's widow, Maureen, called the street dedication "disgusting" and urged Philadelphia residents planning a visit to Paris this summer to cancel their trips. In 2001, the Paris City Council made Abu-Jamal an honorary citizen.
"This is so unnerving for me to get this news," Faulkner said from Los Angeles, where she lives. "It's insulting to the police officers of Philadelphia that they are naming a street after a murderer."
Daniel Faulkner has been honored by a memorial plaque installed at the scene of the shooting at 13th and Locust Streets in Philadelphia.