SAR’s Academic Freedom Monitoring Project investigates and reports attacks on higher education with the aim of raising awareness, generating advocacy, and increasing protection for scholars, students, and academic communities. Learn more.

Date of Incident: January 29, 2013

Attack Types: Travel Restrictions

Institution(s):American University Cairo

Region & Country:Western Asia | Bahrain

New or Ongoing:New Incident

On January 29, 2013, an Assistant Professor of Sociology from American University of Cairo was refused entrance into Bahrain, where she had planned to travel for a 4-day research trip. An American citizen, Dr. Amy Austin Holmes had arrived at Bahrain Airport from Cairo.

Dr. Holmes was given no explanation as to why she was denied entrance into the country.  However, the US Embassy has suggested that Dr. Holmes’ professional interest and published work on the Arab Spring and the Egyptian uprising led local authorities to deny her entry into Bahrain.
Scholars at Risk is concerned about apparent restriction on a scholar’s mobility based on the content of her work. State authorities have a responsibility to protect academic freedom and not to interfere with scholar’s responsible research, teaching, publication and other expressive activity, so long as that activity is undertaken peacefully and responsibly.