Bahraini Authorities Prevent Activists from Leaving for Geneva


TEHRAN (FNA)- The authorities in Bahrain prevented a number of human rights activists from traveling to Switzerland's Geneva, where the the 32rd session of the UN Human Rights Council will kick off on Monday.
The security authorities at the Bahrain International Airport stopped a number of rights activists at the passport gate for "security reasons" and then sent them back preventing them from traveling without clarifying the reasons, Bahrain Mirror reported.
The rights defenders were to take part in the HRC session as part of the national delegation participating in the event.
This isn't the first time human rights activists are banned from traveling, as the newly-detained president of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights Nabeel Rajab is still banned from leaving the country, and the authorities also held the passport of Sheikh Maytham Al-Salman, who is in charge of the religious freedoms file at the Bahrain Observatory for Human Rights, banning him from traveling.
Human rights defenders are repeatedly targeted by the security authorities and face systematic campaigns of slander launched by state and semi-official media outlets. These campaigns escalate with the approach of the HRC session to be held in Geneva.
Bahraini rights activist Ibtisam Al-Sayegh was banned from flying to Geneva earlier this week, deemed this decision unlawful and an act of retaliation against human rights activism.
Al-Sayegh says that she was held for over an hour at the passports check gate, where the employees informed her that she was placed on a travel ban list only four days ago.
She further stated that the security authorities returned her passport only after the plane had took off and told her to inquire on the matter at the Immigration and Passports Directorate.