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Defend The Right To Protest » featured » Open letter - Support Bahraini students in the UK

Open letter - Support Bahraini students in the UK

This letter has been initiated by members of the NUS NEC, Defend the Right to Protest supporters and other activists. If you want to sign the letter please post a comment below

To whom it may concern,

The wave of revolutions sweeping the Arab World has seen people demonstrate in the face of brutal oppression to call for change. In Bahrain protestors have called for one person one vote, a constitutional monarchy, and an end to corruption – many were shot dead in the street, and hundreds have now disappeared, after Saudi soldiers joined Bahraini police in a violent crack-down that has been condemned by many human rights organisations.

Bahraini students inManchesterand otherUKcities have been targeted by the Bahraini government for exercising their right to protest in support of the Bahraini democracy movement. They have now had their sponsorship cancelled by the Bahraini government, which has also demanded that the students return from theUK. These students face severe punishment if they do return toBahrain, and those who have returned from other countries have been arrested at the airport upon arrival. The Guardian has recently documented the risks facing Bahraini students and their families (see link below).

The British government has recently allowed Libyan students to continue their studies in theUKand provided financial assistance to facilitate this. The universal access to education is a right and should not be denied as a punishment for participating in protest.

We the undersigned call upon University chancellors to ensure these students can continue their studies, can remain in accommodation and do receive support.

In addition we call upon the British Foreign Secretary to call in the Bahrain Ambassador and demand that the Bahraini crack-down is ended.

Yours sincerely,

Mark Bergfeld, NUS NEC

Aaron Porter, NUS President

Liam Burns, NUS President-elect

Susan Nash, VP Society and Citizenship

Joshua McKenzie, NUS NEC

Kanja Sesay, NUS Black Students’ Officer

Vicki Baars, NUS LGBT Officer (Women’s place)

Alan Bailey, NUS LGBT Officer

Ciarnan Helferty, President NUS-USI

Sean Rillo Raczka, ULU Vice-President elect

John Peart, NUS NEC

Shane Chowen, NUS VP Further Education

Ed Marsh, NUS VP Union Development

Kelley Temple, NUS Scotland Women’s Officer

Rupy Kaur, NUS Disabled Students’ Officer

Katie Dalton, NUSWalesPresident

Stevie Wise, VP Academic AffairsEdinburghStudents Association

Pete Woodward, NUS NEC

Luke Young, NUS Wales

Sophia James, NUS NEC

Estelle Hart, NUS Women’s Officer-elect

Paul Tobin, NUS NEC

Matt Bond, NUS Disabled Students’ Committee

Toni Pearce, VP Further Education-elect

Robin Parker, NUSScotlandPresident-elect

CameronTait,SussexUni SU President

Hannah Paterson, Welfare Officer Manchester Uni SU

Dan Derricott, VP Academic Affairs Lincoln Students’ Union

Emma Kerry, Women’s Officer Manchester Uni Students’ Union

Chris Dingle, Kingston University Students President-elect

Anil Joshi Sachdeo, NUS Black Students’ Committee

Shelley King, UBU Ethics, Environment & Welfare Officer Bradford Uni

Sarah Fearns, Welfare and Equality Officer Newcastle University Students’ Union

Lee Gavin, UCA Students’ Union

Claire Locke, President-elect London Met SU

James Pickin, NUS NEC

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