Alert: USA – Message from one of the Holy Land 5

Alert: USA – Message from one of the Holy Land 5


1. Summary

2. Action required

3. Mufid Abdulqader’s message

4. Write a letter of support

1. Summary

The Holy Land 5 were the top personnel running the biggest Islamic charity in America, the Holy Land Foundation, established primarily to serve the oppressed Palestinians in the Middle East. Initially set up by Ghassan Elashi (chairman), the charity was unjustly dismantled and had its assets frozen after it was wrongly designated as a terrorist group. After two unfair trials, the five men were sentenced from 15 to 65 years in prison and remain detained in CMUs to this day. Below is a message from Mufid Abdulqader as he details his exercise routine for the month of Ramadan. While we are aware that this routine will not be for everyone, there is something to be gained from Br Mufid Abdulqader’s resilience and the spirit of his message is something we can all take with us for the month. 

2. Action required

We ask everyone to engage more with the campaign for the Holy Land 5 – please visit 

Please also write to the Holy Land 5 detainees and offer words of encouragement and support

3. Mufid Abdulqader’s message

The following are my thoughts about Exercising in Ramadan in prison:

Every Ramadan I try to keep myself fit and work out in the evening (every other day). I try to time my work out to be as close as possible to the time of break fast (Iftar). However, this year a young Muslim brother from Haiti offered to work out with me and help me improve my workout . This young man is in his mid 20’s, 6′-1″, very muscular, vey well built, and his muscles are extremely well defined from top to bottom and he could be on the cover of any fitness magazine. He has an amazing strength. At the beginning, I was reluctant to train with him for several reasons. The first one was that he wanted to work out from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM and that would leave me potentially dehydrated (after working out) and having to wait for around 2 1/2 hours before I can break my fast and drink water around 9:20 PM. Also I was worried that I may not be able to match his intensity and strength and become a burden that would slow him down. However, He convinced me that everything will work out and I decided to give it a try.

I am not writing this experience to boast about my abilities or strength or show off purposes. That is never my intention. My intention is to show the greatness of Ramadan and to show that each and everyone of us can be physically active in this great month. This is not the month of sleeping during the day and staying up all night eating and having fun. In the month of Ramadan, the Muslims had fought some of the greatest battles against the enemies of Islam and had been victorious.

On our first day of workout, I was really worried that I would become dehydrated and not finish my fasting that day because these days are some of the longest and hottest days of the year. Here in Terre Haute, Indiana, we fast from 4:47 AM to 9:21 PM, approx. 16.5 hours. However, I decided to try it and the results so far has been amazing. Here is what we did on the first day:

1- 500 jumping jacks- we did 150 none stop, rested for 20 seconds, another 150, rested for 30 seconds and another 100, rested for 10 seconds and finished with the last 100

2- 10 sets of pulls up (5 reps each)(he did 15 reps)

3- 5 sets of dips (10 reps each)

4- 10 sets of chin up (5 sets each)(he did 15 reps)

It took us around 45 minutes to finish this work out in the prison’s gymnasium. I was sweating like crazy and out of breath but still standing and feeling great.

On the second day, at 6:00 PM we went outside to the prison’s yard and walked around the running track (around a softball field) and did the following:

1- 15 set of push ups (15 reps each)(he did 25 reps)

2- 15 sets of abs exercises and squats (10 reps each)

3- Jogged around the track (1 mile)

4- Ran up the steps of the bleachers where prisoners sit while watching the softball game and then ran down and then up again and ran down again (40 steps each time).

5- 100 jumping jacks (none stop)

It was sunny and hot and was drenching in sweat and extremely tired but still standing. It took us 45 minutes (none stop) to finish the work out.

We are planning to continue to work out together every day in Ramadan Insha Allah.

I believe that if someone like me (56 years old with knee problems) living in a hot prison cell (no air-conditioning) could do this, I believe that anyone could do as much if not more.

At first I was not sure that I could do it even though I have been working out before Ramadan. I believe Allah (SWT) has given me extra energy to be able to do that.

All you need to do is try. Get up and take small steps. Just get out, run, fast walk, or just plain walk. Even the simplest of work out routines will make you healthy as long you stick to it. You also need to watch out what you eat. Stay away from sugary food, starches, white bread, French fries, white rice, potatoes and eat more vegetables, fruits, chicken, lamb or other halal meats. When you break your fast, always go for dates, water and then eat a lot of vegetables before you eat any of the sweets. These simple changes will make a big difference in the long run if you stick to them after Ramadan.

Ramadan is not the month of laziness, eating or sleeping. Make it a month of change and it will have a lasting impact on your life.

I hope that this would inspire a few brothers and sisters to make this Ramadan a fresh start not just to increase our spirituality but also to strengthen our bodies as well. Like I said earlier, my purpose of writing this e-mail was not to boast about my abilities but rather to show that if a 56 year old man (grandfather) with knee problems could do it, so could young and old brothers and sisters.

Your brother,

Mufid Abdulqader

4. Write a letter of support

Listed below are the addresses of the Holy Land 5. Please help by writing them letters with support and encouragement 

Address for Ghassan Elashi:

Inmate Name & Register Number (see below)



P.O. BOX 1000

MARION, IL 62959

Address for Shukri Abu-Baker:

Inmate Name & Register Number (see below)



P.O. BOX 26030


Address for Mohammad El-Mezain:



P.O. BOX 4000


Address for Mufid Abdulqader:

Inmate Name & Register Number (see below)



P.O. BOX 33


Address for Abdulrahman Odeh:

Inmate Name & Register Number (see below)



PO BOX 1000

OXFORD, WI 53952

Inmate Name & Register Number:

Ghassan Elashi 29687-177

Shukri Abu-Baker 32589-177

Mufid Abdulqader 32590-177

Mohammad El-Mezain 92412-198

Abdulrahman Odeh 26548-050

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