Iran Must Respect Defenders’ Right to Travel
Wednesday 17 December 2008, by
On December 10, women’s rights activist and attorney Nasrin Sotoudeh and her family went to the Imam Khomeini Airport. They planned to travel to Italy, where Sotoudeh was to receive an international human rights award.
Sotoudeh heard her name announced over the airport intercom system. Security officials approached her, seized her passport, and informed her that she was not permitted to travel.
Sotoudeh is not alone. At least four other women’s rights activists have gone through the same experience: Parvin Ardalan, Mansoureh Shojaee, Talat Taghinia, and Sussan Tahmasebi. Furthermore, Esha Momeni, member of the One Million Signatures Campaign for gender equality, is still unable to leave Iran, as the Ministry of Intelligence continues to hold her passport.
Governments must grant all persons the right to travel. Human rights defenders in particular rely on the exercise of this right in order to participate in meetings with their colleagues around the world and to have access to international human rights bodies.
Please join us in calling on the Iranian authorities to end their harassment of women’s rights activists and to respect the right of human rights defenders to travel.
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