Stanford University’s Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law calls on the Bahraini authorities to release the travel ban on Sheikh Maytham Al Salman. Sheikh Al Salman was selected to participate in the 2016 Draper Hills Summer Fellowship Program at Stanford University from over 500 applicants based on the significant contributions that he has made to build more tolerant societies to counter violence and extremism in the Middle East.
The faculty and staff at CDDRL have been notified that his passport has been held – without his consent - by the Bahraini authorities who have refused to release it to allow him to travel. We are very disappointed and shocked by the Bahraini government’s decision to prevent Sheikh Al Salman from traveling to attend our academic program at Stanford University. We join the international community in condemning this decision and call upon the Bahraini authorities to reverse this decision and allow Sheikh Al Salman to participate in our leadership development program this July.
Sheikh al-Salman is well recognized for his work building tolerant societies in the Middle East and countering incitement to violence and discrimination in accordance with international human rights standards, in particular respect for freedom of expression as per Articles 19 and 20 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which Bahrain is not a signatory. He is the director of Middle East North Africa Coalition Against Hate Speech; chairperson of Bahrain Interfaith; head of the religious freedom unit at Bahrain Human Rights Observatory; member of the UN committee for partnering with Interfaith leaders; member of the UN advisory committee for the role of religious leaders in preventing genocide; and Arabian Gulf representative of International association for religious freedom. Sheikh Al Salman is applauded for his calls for equal citizenship, his condemnation of all forms of discrimination and his opposition to violence and extremism in the name of religion.
Francis Fukuyama, Mosbacher Director of the Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law
Larry Diamond, Senior Fellow Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies
Sarina Beges, Associate Director Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law