Muslim Group Sues MD Over Israel Boycott Order

Jan 10, 2019

Syed Saquib Ali
Credit official photo

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) - A Muslim civil rights group is suing to block the state of Maryland from enforcing an executive order barring state agencies from contracting with businesses that boycott Israel.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations sued Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan and state Attorney General Brian Frosh on Wednesday on behalf of software engineer Syed Saqib Ali, a former state lawmaker.

The October 2017 executive order requires contractors to certify that they don't boycott Israel. Ali's federal lawsuit says the order bars him from bidding for government software contracts because he supports boycotts of businesses and organizations that "contribute to the oppression of Palestinians."

CAIR says 26 states have enacted measures similar to Maryland's. CAIR attorney Gadeir Abbas says other federal lawsuits have challenged measures in Arizona, Arkansas, Kansas and Texas.