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The Nightmare Gets Worse for An American Woman and Her Child Trapped In Bahrain

Posted on August 28 2010 5:00 pm
Phyllis Chesler is an Emerita Professor of Psychology and Women's Studies at City University of New York. For extended biography visit The Phyllis Chesler Organization.
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Yazmin Maribel Bautista, left, and her daughter, Fatima Sadiq Al-Saffar.

On Thursday, August 26 in Bahrain, the country’s police stormed into the home where Yazmin Maribel Bautista was hiding her five-year-old daughter, Fatima, an American citizen. She was hiding her child to keep her from being handed over to her Bahraini father for weekend visitation as ordered by a local court. Yazmin, an American citizen from Arizona, was helpless to prevent this from happening.

Her lawyer, Majid Shehab, who nobly took on the case pro bono, was arrested for trying to report the police and keep them from taking the child away. The lawyer has since been bailed out. Yazmin does not know whether her daughter, Fatima, will be returned to her. She also does not know whether it is safe for her to remain in the country. Yazmin has no money, no job, no financial resources, and no powerful relatives who can help her fight for her daughter.

Fatima is terrified of her father’s family and once hid under a café table when she saw relatives approaching. She said: “I don’t want to see my father. He will take me so that I will never see you (my mother) again.”

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