WASHINGTON, DC – The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) today expressed deep sadness at news of the death of Minnesota Senator Paul Wellstone. Wellstone, his wife Sheila, daughter Marcia, and 5 other people were killed when their Beach aircraft crashed during a campaign trip in Minnesota. ADC offers its sincere condolences to Senator Wellstone’s family and the people of Minnesota.
ADC President Ziad Asali said, “we join with the entire nation in mourning Senator Wellstone’s sudden and tragic death. He was a man of principle, deeply committed to the American values of tolerance, diversity and civility. Sen. Wellstone was much admired in the Arab-American community for his unwavering support of fairness and decency in American public policy. He was one of the Senators who expressed serious concerns about civil liberties during this difficult time.
Sen. Wellstone was deeply respected throughout the country as a man who always tried to put the public interest over the high-powered agendas of special-interest groups.”
Wellstone will be remembered as one of the members of Congress who advocated the creation of a Palestinian state. On April 30, 2002, Sen. Wellstone spoke on the Senate floor about the situation in the Middle East. He said, “we must pursue a courageous policy which seeks both to meet the critical need of the Israeli people to be free from terrorism and violence, and acknowledges the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people for their own state, a state which is economically and politically viable. Even in this horrific time, we must not lose sight of what should be our ultimate goal: Israel and a new Palestinian state living side-by-side, in peace, with secure borders.”
Dr. Asali concluded, “Sen. Wellstone was a fine public servant and an outstanding Senator. He will be deeply missed.”