MESA's Task Force on Civil and Human Rights notes with concern the increasing denial of entry to students, particularly from Iran, with valid visas, as well as reports of deportations and interrogations. MESA has initiated a study of the issues of visa cancelation, border denials, and deportations of students and faculty from the Middle East and North Africa. We are seeking information to better document the challenges faced by those seeking to travel from the MENA region to the US for academic purposes. Please contact visaRA@mesana.org if you would like to provide information regarding these issues.
Memo on US Supreme Court Decision on IRAP v. Trump upholding September 24, 2017 Presidential Proclamation of Travel Ban
On June 26, 2018, the United States Supreme Court issued an opinion upholding President Trump’s third Muslim Ban. MESA continues to believe that the travel ban is at odds with fundamental principles upheld by the scholarly community including non-discrimination and a commitment to the free exchange of ideas. MESA will continue to take proactive steps to mitigate the adverse impact of the travel ban on research collaborations, scholarly activities and the students in our community.
On Monday, March 6, 2017, President Donald J. Trump signed a new Executive Order (EO) that restricts entry into the United States for 90 days for all nationals of Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen.
Letter to University of Khartoum President Mustafa Idris protesting the procedures followed in the expulsion of two students, Mr. Shams al-Din Muhammad al-Hassan Abbas Shatir and Ms. Rasha Abd al-Hamid Hasan Ali.
Letter to Sudanese officials regarding the arrest of thirty-three women on 1 December 1997, who were members of the Sudanese Women Association and the Mothers of the Sudanese Students Union. They organized a march to the UN headquarters in Khartoum protesting the forcible conscription of students and to deliver a memorandum to the UN representative.
Letter to Sudanese Authorities expressing concern over the arrest of 22 people, including students and violence against student demonstrations protesting the arrests as part of a harsh crackdown on all forms of student dissent.
Letter to the Sudanese Head of State and Defense Minister regarding the presidential decree to revoke the license of the Khartoum Branch of the Cairo University. The campus has been renamed Nilein University and the Egyptian president has been replaced with a Sudanese president.
Letter to Sudanese Head of State and Defense Minister expressing concern over the wide range of human rights abuses affecting academic freedom in Sudan including: dismissal of university professors and administrators, imprisonment and possible torture of university professors and students, closure, occupation or interference at university campuses by security forces and the Islamization or Arabization of universities.
Second letter to Sudanese Head of State and Defense Minister regarding further violations of human rights of detained academics including denial of travel visas for health reasons, harsh treatment of detainees and intimidation by government officials. There is additional concern due to the indefinite closure of Khartoum University following a student strike cutting off students and professors from their place of study.
Letter to Sudanese Head of State and Defense Minister regarding the detention of leading professionals including a number of university professors who have been denied family visits and legal representation although none have been charged with any offense.