Friday, April 22, 2011

Professor Arrested in Abu Dhabi, French Look the Other Way

Nasser Bin Ghaith, a professor of economics, has been arrested in Abu Dhabi, apparently for stating on a blog that he favored a transition to democracy. The professor may or may not be employed by the Abu Dhabi branch of the Sorbonne. His relatives tell Rue89 that he lectures weekly on the campus there, whereas two Sorbonne officials in Paris claim that he has merely been an invited guest lecturer from time to time. In any case, no one at the Sorbonne seems willing to intervene on behalf of Prof. Bin Ghaith even as a colleague. This is a rather odd position to take at a time when French forces are engaged elsewhere in the Arab world in support of the very transition to democracy that Prof. Bin Ghaith advocates. About the attitude of French university authorities, Amnesty International says this:

« C'est une honte. On aurait pensé que la Sorbonne, qui agit en temps normal pour le développement d'une certaine culture, aurait au contraire soutenu Nasser bin Ghaith sans son combat et pour sa libération. »
(h/t JB)


Anonymous said...

It's an outrage.
the "just a guest lecturer" sounds like the paltry excuse it is.
Yes "c'est une honte" and I'm wondering why there aren't columns in Le Monde about it.

meshplate said...

as we know being at the bottom of the academic food chain means you have no rights -- now we've got the living proof.