The Arab Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) released a statement Monday demanding that Egyptian authorities provide reasonable answers for the ongoing travel ban against Bahraini political and social activists.
The announcement comes two days after political activist Abas Fadel, secretary general of the National Unionist Assembly, was detained for seven hours in Cairo International Airport before being deported back to Bahrain.
Egyptian authorities have frequently banned Bahraini political and social activists from entering the country after the 25 January Revolution. Ramla Abdul Hameed, a political activist, was banned from entering the country in March 2013. Nabil Raged, a leading human rights activist, was also detained in the Cairo International Airport upon his arrival to the country in April 2012. A group of activists and lawyers failed to get him admitted to the country.
Mariam Al Khawaga, another human rights activist, was also denied entry to the country in April 2012. A group of Egyptian activists organised a march in front of the airport, which eventually succeeded in Al Khawaga’s entry to the country. In August of the same year, however, she was denied return to Egypt.
The ANHRI statement said a continuing ban on Arab and Bahraini activists “is a shameful matter for Egypt, which succeeded at toppling two dictatorial, anti-freedom, and anti-democracy regimes in a period not exceeding three years.”
The statement added that “the continuation of banning activists from entering the country and the ongoing use of security solutions, brings us back again to State Security’s policies that existed before the 25 January Revolution,” which they completely reject. “Such policies are now being adopted by the dictatorial regimes in a way that is not commensurate with Egypt after revolution,” ANHRI said.
The statement also claims that the ongoing travel ban on Bahraini activists suggests that Egyptian authorities are working alongside the Bahraini government to “impose a media blackout over the Bahraini regime’s violations against its people.”
The statement demands that Egyptian authorities clarify their reasons for banning Abas Fadel from Egyptian soil, and demands that Egypt not respond to the demands regarding travel bans of other countries’ security services.
“Following the success of its two revolutions,” the statement concludes, “it is unacceptable for Egypt to receive such security orders from other countries.”