A WORLD TO WIN    #25   (1999)

Stop the Execution of Mumia Abu-Jamal!

Mumia Abu-Jamal is a journalist, revolutionary activist and political prisoner who has been on death row in the United States since 1982. He was falsely convicted of killing a policeman in the city of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in an unfair trial, at which he was denied the right to act as his own attorney while police witnesses put him at the scene of the crime. In actual fact Mumia was framed and sentenced to death for his revolutionary convictions.

When still a youth Mumia became a key figure in the Philadelphia branch of the Black Panther Party, a revolutionary organisation of Black people in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Mumia later became known as the "voice of the voiceless" for his revolutionary reporting on the radio. In particular Mumia played a key role in exposing the police persecution and murder of activists in MOVE, a Philadelphia-based group. His exposure of racism and police brutality and his revolutionary politics have earned him the hatred of the US authorities, particularly the police. They first tried to kill him at the time of his arrest and since then have actively organised a campaign of lies to influence public opinion in favour of his execution. What they hate about Mumia is what the people have come to love and defend: a revolutionary brother who has stood firm in the face of the enemy.

Mumia's lawyers have documented a whole series of irregularities and lies at his original trial, including new evidence that at least one police informant who testified against him has now exposed the frame-up. Based on this, he appealed for a new trial - but in October 1998 the Pennsylvania Supreme Court denied his appeal, paving the way for his execution. The increasing use of state executions is an important spearhead of U.S. imperialism's reactionary program, and it will take determined, massive opposition to force them to back off from their murderous plans.

Around the world, broad movements to support Mumia and fight his execution have sprung up over the past years, and the participating parties and organisations of the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement have helped take the campaign to countries it might not have reached otherwise. This international campaign was undoubtedly one of the factors that forced the state to temporarily back down from executing him in August 1995. From cities across the US to France, Germany, Holland, Italy, the UK and other places in Europe, to South Africa, to India and Bangladesh in Asia, people have been spreading information and holding actions to prevent the US ruling class from carrying out their first state execution of a political prisoner since the 1950s, when they killed Ethel and Julius Rosenberg as part of their anti-communist campaign at that time. Many artists, authors and other prominent people have stepped forward to defend Mumia.

In April 1999, Mumia's lawyers filed a petition with the US Supreme Court demanding that it examine important legal issues, including his right to a fair trial. It is expected that the battle to stop the execution will intensify in early autumn, with several events already planned for September 1999. As one slogan raised in the US points out, "Only the People Can Save Mumia Abu-Jamal!"

For more information, contact:
Refuse & Resist!
305 Madison Ave. Suite 1166, New York,
NY 10165, US.
Email: resist@walrus.com
Also: International Concerned Family & Friends of
Mumia Abu-Jamal,
PO Box 19709,
PA 19143, US.
Email: Mumia@aol.org
Background articles and news about support actions devoted to Mumia can be found on the Revolutionary Worker
web page: www.mcs.net/śrw