Striking for Dignity and Freedom

by Amahl Bishara | published May 5, 2017 - 8:28am

More than 1,500 Palestinian political prisoners began a hunger strike on April 17 for better conditions inside Israeli jails. Their demands include access to education, proper medical care and an end to the practice of solitary confinement. They are striking to make their families’ lives easier, too—for regular visitation rights and respectful treatment of visitors by prison administrators.

Release Homa Hoodfar

by The Editors | published June 10, 2016 - 12:20pm

We are deeply concerned by the arrest and ongoing detention of Homa Hoodfar, an eminent anthropologist and contributor to Middle East Report, by the Revolutionary Guard Corps of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Jordan Drops the Pretense of Democratic Reform

by Jillian Schwedler | published April 28, 2016 - 12:19pm

In September 2012, King ‘Abdallah II of Jordan stopped by “The Daily Show” to chat with Jon Stewart about his commitment to democratic reform in his country. In the wake of the uprisings across the Arab world, he said, “We changed a third of the constitution. We did a lot of different things—a new constitutional court, a new independent commission for elections,” all in preparation for a transition from monarchical rule to meaningful parliamentary governance. “This is the critical crossroads for Jordan to get it right, these next four years,” the king concluded.

Your Tax Dollars Enable Police Brutality Abroad

by Chris Toensing | published March 9, 2016

Ever since the Black Lives Matter movement exploded into the headlines, violence by American police officers has come under fire from activists and ordinary citizens alike. Less discussed, however, is how the US government winks at the police brutality of its client states abroad.

The military government in Egypt, for example, is cracking down hard on its restive citizenry—harder than any time in memory. And the United States, which sends the country over a $1 billion a year in security aid, is looking the other way.

The cops on the beat in Egyptian cities are a menace. They demand bribes from motorists on any pretense and mete out lethal violence on a whim.

Defending Academic Freedom

by Laurie A. Brand | published February 23, 2016 - 11:56am

Constraints on academic freedom or violations of it are not new in the Middle East and North Africa. Indeed, while there is certainly variation among the countries of the region, regime attempts to control what is studied, how it is studied, and what faculty and students may do and say both on and off campus have a long history.

Scholars of Egypt Protest Crackdown on Freedom of Expression

published November 18, 2015 - 3:45pm
November 18, 2015
 
President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi
Arab Republic of Egypt
 
Ahmed al-Zind
Minister of Justice, Arab Republic of Egypt
 
Sedky Sobhy
Minister of Defense, Arab Republic of Egypt
 
Yasser Reda
Ambassador of the Arab Republic of Egypt to the United States
 

Release Hossam Bahgat

by The Editors | published November 9, 2015 - 2:35pm

UPDATE: Hossam Bahgat was released from detention at midday Cairo time on November 10. It is uncertain whether the charges against him are still pending. We will post further updates as warranted.
---

Iran's Unfair Nationality Laws

by Narges Bajoghli | published November 9, 2015 - 10:41am

At an October meeting of young Iranian-American leaders at the residence of the Iranian ambassador to the United Nations, I asked Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif about the country’s unfair nationality laws. By these statutes, no Iranian woman married to a non-Iranian man can pass on her citizenship to her children, whereas an Iranian man can pass it on not only to his children, but also to a non-Iranian wife.

LGBT Rights in Iran

by Shima Houshyar | published October 21, 2015 - 10:13am

Over the last two decades, issues relating to sexual orientation and gender identity have gained significant visibility and attention across the globe. The case of Iran is particularly fraught, and has received plenty of coverage due to the work of international non-profits.

"A Beast That Took a Break and Came Back"

Prison Torture in Egypt

by Lina Attalah
published in MER275

Aida Seif al-Dawla is a psychiatrist whose fight for citizens’ rights and dignity in Egypt has taken many forms since her days as a student activist in the 1970s. In 1993, she founded the Nadeem Center for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence and Torture, of which she remains executive director. Lina Attalah, editor-in-chief of the independent newspaper Mada Masr, spoke with Seif al-Dawla in early April 2015 about the prevalence of torture in Egypt and the latest state attempts to restrict the activities of non-governmental organizations.