Zack de la Rocha To Address International Commission on Human Rights in Geneva, Switzerland

Meeting with the Press:

Time: 1:00 PM

Place: Library, Salle de Presse II

Date: Tuesday, April 13, 1999

On April 12 in Geneva, Switzerland, Zack de la Rocha of Rage Against The Machine will speak before a Full Session of the International Commission of Human Rights of the United Nations on the case of Mumia Abu-Jamal and the application of the death penalty in the United States.

Zack's appearance before the Commission comes in response to a request from the International Educational Development, Inc./ Humanitarian Law Project, in recognition of his longstanding public support for a new trial for the Philadelphia journalist and activist, Mumia Abu-Jamal, who has been on death row in Pennsylvania since his unjust conviction for the murder of a Philadelphia policeman, Daniel Faulkner. The presiding judge in the case, Albert Sabo, had already sentenced 26 defendants to death -- 24 of whom were African-American.

Rage Against The Machine has organized and headlined two major benefit concerts, with proceeds donated to the International Concerned Family And Friends Of Mumia Abu-Jamal: on August 13, 1995 at the Capitol Ballroom in Washington, D.C.; and on January 28, 1999 at the Continental Airlines Arena in East Rutherford, N.J.

"Mumia Abu-Jamal was targeted in this case for political and racial reasons," stated Zack de la Rocha. "Judge Sabo showed bias throughout both the trial and the appeal. The prosecution falsified and suppressed evidence that could have exonerated Mumia. Blacks were illegally excluded from the jury, there was police intimidation of witnesses, and the prosecution coerced witnesses into providing perjured testimony."

"The U.S. has made a business out of violating the human rights of the world community," added Zack. "A crime is a crime regardless of the tools used in the trade, whether it's a Stealth bomber over Belgrade or a sham trial and a syringe in Philadelphia. Both murder innocent civilians, both are premeditated, and both are gross violations of international law."