Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs

#Banned: A Virtual Conference on U.S. immigration policies with leading activists from Libya, Syria & Yemen

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

1:30 p.m. – 3 p.m.

McKinney Conference Room

Registration is required. Please register here.

Watch webcast

The Trump administration's decision last month to suspend all incoming travel from seven Muslim-majority countries drew international attention. Many individuals and institutions––including our University–-opposed the ban as an action that is not only indiscriminate in its application and contrary to its stated objectives but also detrimental to the work of scholars and activists working for positive change in these countries. While the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals's recent suspension of the executive order has partly resolved the crisis, the administration has recently stated that it remains committed to pushing forward with the same policy. 

This "virtual" conference, attended by three leading activists whose mobility will be restricted as a direct consequence of this action, will provide insights on how the travel ban and its implications are affecting activists working to promote rights and liberties in these corners of the world, opening the space for a critical dialogue on the merits, risks, and consequences of the administration's current policy.  

Taubman Center for American Politics and Policy

The panelists are: 

Zaina Erhaim (@zainaerhaim): Syrian journalist and the director of the Institute for War and Peace Reporting's Syria program. Zaina was the recipient of Reporters Without Borders' 2015 Peter Machler Award for Courageous Journalism and the Index on Censorship's 2016 Freedom of Expression Journalism Award. She was––twice––forced out of Syria and is currently based in Turkey. 

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/sep/24/syrian-journalist-zaina-erhaim-passport-held-assad-request

Asma Khalifa (@AsmaKhalifa89): Libyan youth activist. Recipient of the2016  European Union's Luxembourg Peace Prize for "her contributions in the world as a key player to support peace-building and promoting peace and understanding...as an outstanding young peacemaker"

http://nytlive.nytimes.com/womenintheworld/2016/08/01/if-i-want-to-see-hope-in-libya-again-i-have-to-work-for-it/

Afrah Nasser (@afrahnasser): Yemeni activist-blogger. Currently, in self-exile in Sweden. 2016 recipient of Sweden's Pensskaftspriset (Pen Holder Prize) for "brave freelance journalism by females" 

Moderated by Narges Bajoghli (@nargesbajoghi): Postdoctoral Fellow at the Watson Institute