For current political commentary, see the daily political notes.
RMS' Bio | The GNU Project
This page lists countries that regularly apply surprising repressive laws to visiting foreigners.
We do not try to mention all the repressive regimes that punish people for criticizing the regime in a serious way. There are too many of those to mention here, and you're not likely to do that without thinking about it.
This page was not made through a systematic study. Some countries not listed may be worse than some countries that are listed.
Why risk a visit to these countries? Why spend any of your money there? Stay away!
The United Arab Emirates:
Dubai has accused a tourist of "public indecency" after his hand brushed another man's hip in a bar.
The court changed his hearing date, didn't tell him, and sentenced him to 30 days in jail for not being clairvoyant. Evidently, Dubai is run by clowns and lunatics.
One day later, the ruler of Dubai released him. I am glad he did this, but you should still stay away from Dubai.
A Danish woman accepted a complimentary glass of wine on an Emirates flight to Dubai. On account of this, she has been jailed there for a year awaiting trial.
Dubai dropped charges against Ellie Holman, and allowed her to leave.
Aside from great stress, the experience cost her tens of thousands of dollars. Why take a crazy risk? Stay away!
Holding Hands, Drinking Wine and Other Ways to Go to Jail in Dubai. Also: getting raped, being pregnant, or giving someone the finger.
jails people for gestures such as giving someone the finger.
People passing through Dubai airport are imprisoned for having microscopic amounts of marijuana in their pockets or even on the soles of their shoes.
An Egyptian is being prosecuted for saying that the water in the Nile is not safe to drink.
I am sure that statement is true, but it is no shame to Egypt. How could any large river that flows past cities be safe to drink from?
What is a shame to Egypt is that it prosecutes people for stating unpleasant facts.
Egypt is arresting people and disappearing them; often that means killing them.
Egyptian TV hostess Doaa Salah has been sentenced to three years in prison for discussing the possibility of single women's having babies.
British Woman Languishes in Egyptia Jail for Carrying Painkillers.
Egypt put 500 protesters on trial and sentenced most of them to life in prison. 52 of them were released after 4 years waiting in prison.
Egyptian thugs arrested dozens of people at a concert, making silly charges that are a front for "being homosexual."
It is part of the increasing general repression directed at gays in Egypt.
Amal Fathy posted that she would leave Egypt because of sexual harassment. She was arrested for it.
A political trial in Egypt sentenced hundreds of protesters to prison and 75 to execution.
Amal Fathy posted a video criticizing sexual harassment she experienced at a bank in Egypt. She received an absurd assortment of criminal charges and has now been sentenced to two years in prison.
For your own safety, stay away from Egypt. Spend your money on some other country.
A Pakistani man has been sentenced to death for a statement that supposedly insulted Muhammad on facebook.
Religious fanatics in Pakistan protested to demand explicit repression of minority Muslim sects, effectively barring them from public office. The protests were so big that the government gave in.
Turkish football fans are accused of being "Gülenists" because they carried a poster from the film, Rocky.
People in Turkey have been threatened with prosecution for repeating rumors
Turkey has laws that make insults a crime.
Defaming women in general is also a crime.
In Turkey, even laughing at politicians can be a crime.
A court released the head of Amnesty International Turkey until his trial for "terrorism", but he was arrested again a little while after.
Journalists from the former Turkish newspaper Zaman have been sentenced to 8 years in prison for "terrorism".
Copyright (c) 2017 Richard Stallman Verbatim copying and redistribution of this entire page are permitted provided this notice is preserved.