Mon, Feb 27, 2017 | updated 02:43 AM IST

UK seizes passport of Syrian activist at Assad's request

Updated: Sep 25, 2016 19:23 IST

London [UK], Sept. 25 (ANI): The British authorities have confiscated the passport of a prominent Syrian activist and critic of President Bashar al-Assad at the request of the Syrian Government, effectively preventing her from travelling and blocking her work.

Zaina Erhaim, an award-winning journalist and campaigner based in Turkey, had her passport taken away by the United Kingdom's border officials when she landed at Heathrow airport in London, reports the Guardian.

After more than an hour of questioning, they told her that the document had been reported stolen.

The complaint came from the government she has been campaigning against for years. "I expect to be harassed inside my country. I know that if I went home I would be killed, but now I find that Assad's arm can even reach to the UK. This is a dictator pursuing a journalist," said Erahim.

A receipt that Erhaim was given for the passport states: "Document reported as stolen."

Erhaim had previously used the passport without problems to travel to the UK in April, when she collected the Index on Censorship's Freedom of Expression Journalism award for her work. She had also travelled on it without any problems across Europe.

She also has an older Syrian passport that she can use to return to Turkey, because it is still valid. But because it has no pages left for visas or immigration stamps - the reason she got the new document - she will effectively be unable to leave Turkey again.

The Home Office said that Britain had to comply with the request because passports are the legal property of the government that issues them. (ANI)

New York [United States], Feb. 27 (ANI): Newly-elected Democratic National Committee (DNC) Chairman Tom Perez has said that an investigation is required determine whether presidential election was 'rigged' by U.S. President Donald Trump and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin.

Full Story >>

New Delhi [India], Feb. 27 (ANI): U.S. President Donald Trump on Sunday continued his tirade against ' fake news media', saying that media reports on Russia's meddling in the 2016 presidential race were "fake news" put by the Democrats and played by the media in order cover their defeat election defeat and the illegal leaks.

Full Story >>

Washington D.C. [United States], Feb. 26 (ANI): Condemning the target of OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) monitors and the seizure of a SMM unmanned aerial vehicle by combined-Russian separatist forces, the United States on Sunday called on Russia to "immediately" observe the ceasefire in Ukraine under the Minsk agreements.

Full Story >>

Lahore [Pakistan] Feb. 26 (ANI): Pakistan has decided to strengthen the military operations across the Punjab province.

Full Story >>

New Delhi [India], Feb. 26 (ANI): Terming the Democratic National Committee (DNC) elections as rigged, U.S. President Donald Trump has said that Sen. Bernie Sanders never had a chance to win as Hillary Clinton demanded former Labor Secretary of U.S.A Tom Perez.

Full Story >>

Geneva [Switzerland], Feb. 26 (ANI): Central Spokesman for Baloch Republican Party Mohammad Bugti, has said that the Pakistani Army's continuous military operation throughout the past week has set a new example of brutality in history.

Full Story >>

Islamabad [Pakistan], Feb. 26 (ANI): Following the crackdown launched by the Counter Terrorism Department of the Punjab Police and the Punjab Rangers in different parts of Layyah and Rawalpindi districts in Pakistan, around 600 suspects have been taken into custody.

Full Story >>

Islamabad [Pakistan], Feb. 26 (ANI): Pakistan has said that it has begun a negotiation mechanism with Afghanistan which will enable both nations to address each other's concerns over terrorism.

Full Story >>

London [U.K.], Feb. 26 (ANI): In a renewed push for independence from Baghdad, Iraqi Kurdish leaders are likely to offer territory seized by their forces in a bid to recapture Mosul from ISIS terrorists.

Full Story >>

New Delhi [India], Feb. 26 (ANI): JK Rowling has never been one to mince words, especially when it comes to Donald Trump, and with the Kansas shooting grabbing eyeballs across the globe with an Indian engineer shot to death by a white man which is being touted as a hate crime, the legendary author has once again lashed out at the United States President over the tragic development.

Full Story >>

London [United Kingdom], Feb. 26 (ANI): Under new British Government guidelines for handling asylum applications, gay Afghans can be deported to their country, but, they will have to pretend that they are straight, as homosexuality is illegal in Afghanistan.

Full Story >>

New Delhi [India], Feb. 26 (ANI): U.S. President Donald Trump has said he will not be attending the White House Correspondents` Association (WHCA) dinner this year, scheduled to be held on April 29.

Full Story >>

Washington D.C. [USA], Feb. 26 (ANI): The Trump administration should 'act as a champion of press freedom', rather than prosecute a war with mainstream US media that could 'send a signal to other countries that it is OK to verbally abuse journalists and undermine their credibility', a senior member of the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) said on Saturday.

Full Story >>

New York [USA], Feb. 26 (ANI): In a rare public spat between two Communist neighbours, North Korea has lashed out at China, without actually naming, accusing it of 'dancing to the tune of the U.S.' over its decision not to import any more coal from the country.

Full Story >>

Washington D.C. [USA], Feb. 26 (ANI): The former labor secretary of U.S.A., Tom Perez, is the new chairman of the Democratic National Committee (DNC). His victory in Atlanta on Saturday saw him make history as the first Latino to lead the task of rebuilding the opposition to Republican President Donald Trump.

Full Story >>

Paris [France], Feb. 26 (ANI): Reproaching U.S. President Donald Trump after he commented on the dangers of terrorism in Paris, President of France François Hollande on Saturday reminded the former of the cardinal rule of diplomacy of not showing 'the least disapproval with respect to an ally', as reported by the New York Times.

Full Story >>

New York [USA], Feb. 26 (ANI): At least 32 people were killed and 24 others injured after several suicide attacks targetted two security centers in the central Syrian city of Homs, according to state media citing the city's Gov. Talal Barazi.

Full Story >>

Berlin [Germany], Feb. 26 (ANI): The driver, who manned the car that drove into the central square of the German city of Heidelberg, hitting three people outside a bakery, was shot after a brief standoff by the police.

Full Story >>

New Delhi[India], Feb. 25(ANI): Malaysian Police said they will conduct a sweep of the terminal at Kuala Lumpur's International Airport, where North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's exiled half-brother Kim Jong Nam was killed, to check for possible traces of the toxic chemical suspected to have been used in the attack.

Full Story >>

Islamabad [Pakistan], Feb.25 (ANI): Pakistan's Interior Minister Chaudhary Nisar Ali Khan on Saturday said that the media can play a most crucial role in disseminating redible information to counter terrorism.

Full Story >>