Palestinian professor cited for contempt in US

A US appeals court on Friday affirmed a civil contempt ruling against a former professor who refuses to testify in front of a federal grand jury investigating Islamic charities. Sami al-Arian, who has been on a hunger strike since January, has claimed a plea agreement in an earlier case against him exempts him from testifying. But a three-judge panel of the 4th US Circuit Court of Appeals unanimously rejected that argument. Al-Arian, a Palestinian born in Kuwait, was sentenced to nearly five years in prison, minus time already served.