Ahmad Harken is an Egyptian 36-year-old Ex-Muslim/atheist, youtuber and free thinker who practices his right of expression.
Since 2016 the Egyptian National Security has imposed a travel ban on Harken for no reason.
Harkan has not violated any law of the state nor caused harm to any individual. There is no court order against him nor any order from the Attorney general. Although he is free to roam the country, he is imprisoned within the compounds of his country for no apparent reason.
Harkan attempted to travel outside Egypt and was banned three times since 2016. The last time Ahmed wanted to travel was on October 21st when he got a Tunisian visa in order to marry his Tunisian fiancée.
On 21st October 2019, Harkan tried to leave Egypt to meet up with his fiancé in her country, Tunisia, where their wedding ceremony was supposed to take place, yet the National Security banned him from traveling, even though the reason for his travel were clear. At the airport, he was told to go back home with no explanation.
Harkan has now been on Hunger Strike for over 20 days, resulting in his hospitalisation. At the hospital, he was threatened that if he keeps going on the hunger strike, they will put him in prison. Harkan says, “I either get my right to travel like anyone else, or die”.
Article 9 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states, “No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention or exile,”
Harkan has committed no crime, he has the right to travel wherever he pleases.
We at the Council of Ex Muslims of Britain urge the Egyptian authorities to permit Ahmed Harkan to travel with immediate effect!
You can now become a Council of Ex Muslims of Britain Patron which allows you to see behind the scenes during our campaigns along with other benefits depending on your chosen tier.
We are s fundraising for safe emergency accommodation for our clients.
CEMB is a support service for individuals who have left Islam (otherwise known as apostates and ex-Muslims). We also campaign against blasphemy and apostasy laws, rather we campaign for secularism and universal human rights.
A 2017 report by U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) found that Blasphemy laws were found in 71 countries from all regions of the world. However, even today the only countries in the world to punish blasphemy with a death sentence are Islamic countries. Furthermore, their report found that a majority of laws in countries that have blasphemy laws do not fully respect international standards of freedom of opinion and expression.
In 2018, World Alas reported that 23 Muslim majority countries still have apostasy laws, furthermore, 13 of those 13 countries have a death penalty for leaving Islam.
Leaving, criticising or even questioning Islam is a dangerous business indeed. We at CEMB support those brave individuals that dare to do as such.
In the last two years, CEMB’s caseload has doubled from supporting 300 ex-Muslims a month to 600 a month. CEMB supports individuals from over 70 countries around the world.
Becoming an ex Muslim can have the following consequences:
– Imprisonment (this could be in a state prison, but could also be families imprisoning Ex Muslims within their homes).
– Mob Lynching
– Forced Marriage
– Honour based abuse/domestic abuse
– Emotional abuse
– Psychological abuse
– Financial abuse
– Physical abuse
– Sexual abuse
– Honour killings
– Corrective rapes
– Coercive control
– Mental health issues
– Suicidal thoughts/feelings/attempts, in some cases successful suicides
In order to escape the risk of the above list, many ex Muslims leave home, some fleeing oppressive countries, others fleeing others fleeing oppressive families.
Leaving Islam for many results in the loss of everything and everyone that is familiar. In some cases, the families are the very ones to forcefully remove their loved ones from their homes and lives, leaving them with nothing.
This is where CEMB steps in to offer them to help and support them. In many cases that has also meant providing emergency accommodation in hotels for those that have been forced out of their families and communities, however this is not a sustainable long term solution, so we have decided to start fundraising for a dedicated refuge that would not only provide emergency housing, but would provide hands on support for the Ex Muslims we house.
We need to raise £300,000 in order to secure a property for this project, please help us with this goal.
Become a Patron Here: https://www.patreon.com/CEMB
March 23rd, International Atheist Day, was observed for the first time across the world, providing a space for non believers to come out in public, defend freethought and show solidarity with those who risk their lives and freedom because they are atheists.
The day was initiated by an international ex-Muslim coalition, namely Arab Atheists, Ateizm Derneği, Atheist Agnostic Alliance of Pakistan, Atheist Republic, Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain (CEMB), Council of Ex-Muslims of France, Council of Ex-Muslims of Jordan, Council of Ex-Muslims of Morocco, Council of Ex-Muslims of Sri Lanka, Ex-Muslims of North America, Ex-Muslims of Norway, Freethought Lebanon, Muslimish and The Black Ducks and was celebrated by atheists across the world, even trending on Twitter.
In London, CEMB organised a direct action where atheist women came together to paint slogans around “There is no God” in chalk in Russell Square in various languages. Photographs of women sitting on the floor with legs akimbo were in solidarity with women across the world who are being sexually assaulted for fighting for their rights and told to ‘sit properly’, ‘be decent’ and threatened with rape for claiming the right to their bodies. It was in particular a show of solidarity with women involved in the aurat march in Pakistan.
This action was followed by an emotional evening MCed by Nahla Mahmoud. Maryam Namazie gave a brief opening address on the need for an Atheist Day; this was followed by a panel discussion of ex-Muslim women speaking out including with Ibtisamme Betty Lachgar, Mimzy Vidz and Zara Kay along with Sadia Hameed and Maryam Namazie. Whether coming from secular or fundamentalist families, the women agreed that losing the fear of challenging God was central. In an intimate discussion which ranged from attempts at exorcism by families determined to ‘fix’ their errant children, to the joy of embracing freedom, they agreed they could never look back. Audience members assured them that they had gained a family in the global ‘community’ of ex-Muslims. Panelists condemned bigotry against Muslims while affirming their right to criticise Islam and Islamism.
One speaker, the poet Halima Salat, who is resident in Amsterdam was denied a visa by the British Home Office. She came out for the first time at Maryam Namazie’s Freedom Lecture at De Balie a few months back and there was great disappointment that she couldn’t join the event, showing how the hostile environment is never far away for apostate refugees. Halima performed her poetry on FGM and against Patriarchy via video link and was able to hear the cheers for her passionate work.
Moreover, CEMB 2019 Awards were presented by Maryam Namazie, Sadia Hameed and Sina Ahadi Pour to those who showed dedicated support to the ex-Muslim movement, namely AC Grayling who has supported the movement since the beginning and Ana Gonzalez of Wilson Solicitors for her immense support for apostate refugee cases and the CEMB; she said that CEMB was the most caring group she had ever worked with. Also awards were given to Asad Abbas for being one of the first and most persistent of CEMB members, Ibtisamme Betty Lachgar for her courageous work in Morocco, Inna Shevchenko of Femen for inspiring CEMB’s topless protests, Mina Ahadi for founding the first Council of Ex-Muslims in Germany and Shelley Segal for being a voice for atheism and ex-Muslims. Awards were also given to two absent friends, the filmmaker Nadia El Fani and Atheist Republic Founder Armin Navabi.
An exhibition by SAMINT used art as a weapon against patriarchy and extremism. The evening ended with dancing to tunes by DJ Zee Jay.
The first Atheist Day in London and across the world was a resounding success. Onwards towards #AtheistDay2020!
VIDEO FOOTAGE FILMED BY MUPHOVI
#ATHEISTDAY ACTION IN RUSSELL SQUARE PARK
With Ibtissame Betty Lachgar, Inna Shevchenko, Maryam Namazie, Sadia Hameed, SAMINT, Shelley Segal and Zara Kay with new ex-Muslim anthem by Shelley Segal: Find Our Way to Freedom as background music.
OPENING SPEECH BY MARYAM NAMAZIE
PANEL OF EX-MUSLIM WOMEN SPEAKING OUT
With Moroccan Activist Ibtissame Betty Lachgar, CEMB Spokespersons Maryam Namazie and Sadia Hameed, Ex-Muslim YouTuber Mimzy Vidz and Faithless Hijabi Founder Zara Kay.
COMEDY BY SADIA HAMEED
POETRY WITH HALIMA SALAT
COMING OUT CERTIFICATES
CEMB 2019 AWARDS
SHELLEY SEGAL SINGS OUR RESISTANCE AND NEW EX-MUSLIM ANTHEM
ATHEISTS AND EX-MUSLIMS JOIN SHELLEY SEGAL ON STAGE TO SING FIND OUR WAY TO FREEDOM