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    The Bahrain Center for Human Rights (BCHR) currently seeks creative, passionate and hard-working applicants for internship positions on Advocacy, Communication and Research.

    BCHR is looking for applicants interested in working full-time or part-time, for a period of 3-6 months. Office hours will be held from 09:00am to 5:00pm, Monday through Friday. This is an unpaid position.

    Main duties

    Interns will:

    • Assist with advocacy campaigns by conducting research and preparing background memos and other written materials;
    • Communication with our international partner organizations, representatives of foreign governments, and the UN;
    • Assist in managing a contacts database and improving our communications with our targeted audience of policy makers;
    • Support lengthy analytical reports on human rights abuses in Bahrain in cooperation with our documentation team, through research and writing;
    • Track Bahrain news, legislation, and statements by global policymakers, the European Parliament, and United Nations officials on a daily basis;
    • Assist in social media campaigns and the drafting of external communications;
    • Write and publish content on our website and on social media platforms;
    • Prepare updates for the website and other media-related materials;
    • Assist with administrative duties as required.

    Requirements

    The ideal candidate should:

    • Be a graduate/undergraduate student - a relevant degree in human rights law is a plus
    • Have an interest in and being knowledgeable of human rights issues, particularly with respect to freedom of speech, expression, and association, due process rights and prisoners’ rights;
    • Have excellent verbal and written communication skills in English;
    • Good ability to attracts and build new contacts with the media and other partners;
    • Be able to work independently, take initiative, and exercise sound judgment;
    • Maintain strict confidentiality and
    • Be committed to BCHR’s mission.

    Additional skills

    Highly desirable additional skills:

    • Arabic and French/German language skills;
    • Knowledgeable and innovative about using social media in a professional capacity (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc.);
    • Photoshop, video editing and/or other graphic design experience;
    • Familiarity with the Adobe suite, HTML formatting and HTML design;
    • Demonstrated research experience (especially related to the Middle East, human rights, democratization, governance, and political rights) and
    • Innovative and passionate about building and executing grassroots outreach/advocacy campaigns, as well as using novel technology tools for advocacy.

     

    To apply, send a CV and cover letter to:  elena.mocanu@bahrainrights.org

      

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    The security authorities in Dry Dock Prison prevented the family of activist Khalil Al-Halwachi from meeting him in an already scheduled visit.

    His daughter Fatima Al-Halwachi said that the authorities prevented them from visiting her father on Tuesday (October 25, 2016)

    Read the full article here

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    The Bahraini Minister of Justice, Islamic Affairs and Endowments Khalid bin Ali Al Khalifa commenced talks on the new bill for minors entitled, "Reformative Justice for Children and Protection from Maltreatment". This comes as Bahrain witnesses the highest number of child arrests and torture cases in light of the ongoing political crisis since 2011.

    Read the full article here.

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    Suspect managed to get through crowds and attack King Hamad's car

    Police managed to drag him and others back and made at least one arrest

    Theresa May urged to raise human rights and death penalty in meeting 

    Read the full article here.

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    Theresa May must raise concerns about the death penalty and torture when she meets the King of Bahrain in London this week, international human rights organisation Reprieve has said.

    Read the full statement here

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    Bahrain, the tiny Persian Gulf kingdom that hosts the U.S. 5th Fleet, used to perceive a need to appear responsive to U.S. concerns about its atrocious human rights record. Five years ago, after President Obama publicly criticized the “mass arrests and brute force” used by the regime to put down popular protests during the Arab Spring, King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa commissioned an international investigation and promised to implement a series of reforms. But as Mr. Obama backed away from his support for democratic change in the Middle East, so did Bahrain. 

    Read the full article here

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    On 26 October the Government of Bahrain decreased the sentence of Fadhel Abbas, former Secretary-General of the al-Wahdawi Political Society. Courts originally sentenced Abbas to five years in prison, following a June 2015 conviction on charges violating Abbas’ right to free expression. However, following his appeal, a court has now reduced Abbas’ sentence from five years to three years in prison.

    We, the undersigned, condemn the imprisonment of Fadhel Abbas for exercising his right to free expression and call on the Government of Bahrain to ensure his immediate release.

    On 26 March 2015, the Government of Bahrain arrested Abbas for public statements made by the al-Wahdawi Political Society condemning the Saudi Arabia-led military coalition in Yemen. Authorities claimed that such statements “attempted to exploit the situation through division.” Abbas’ trial before the High Criminal Court commenced on 27 April 2015, and the court issued its final verdict on 28 June 2015, sentencing Abbas to five years in prison on charges of “spreading false information.” Abbas appealed the sentence, and his first appellate trial took place on 11 October 2015. The authorities did not allow him to be present.

    “The Bahraini government’s decision to arrest and imprison Fadhel Abbas for public statements about the humanitarian crisis in Yemen is a clear violation of his rights to freedom of speech,” said ADHRB Executive Director Husain Abdulla. “The peaceful expression of criticism or political opinion is a criminal act in Bahrain, and the authorities continue to demonstrate that they will systematically target anyone who speaks out against government abuses.”

    Abbas is just one of many political activists, human rights defenders, and religious leaders prosecuted by the Government of Bahrain for voicing their opinion. In June 2016, Bahraini authorities arrested human rights defender and president of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights (BCHR) Nabeel Rajab for tweets. Authorities charged Rajab with “disseminating false rumors in a time of war,” “insulting a neighboring country,” and “insulting a statutory body” under articles 133, 215 and 216 of the penal code. The charges, which could garner a 15-year prison sentence, stem from tweets in which he criticized the Saudi-led intervention in Yemen and documented systematic torture in Bahrain’s Jau Prison. After the New York Times published an editorial by Rajab in September, the authorities brought an additional charge of “undermining the prestige of the state” that could add another year to Rajab’s sentence. Rajab’s next hearing will be on 31 October 2016, when the court could sentence him to up to 15 years in prison.

    The Government of Bahrain has also prosecuted the leaders of other political societies on charges related to free expression. In December 2014, Bahraini authorities arrested Sheikh Ali Salman, Secretary-General of the now-dissolved Al-Wefaq Political Society, for delivering speeches in which he peacefully criticized the government. Courts originally sentenced Sheikh Ali Salman to four years in prison. However, in May 2016, following the prosecution’s appeal, judges reversed Sheikh Ali Salman’s previous acquittal on a charge of attempting to “overthrow” the government. Finding him guilty on the previously-acquitted charge, the court increased his total prison sentence to nine years. On 17 October, the Court of Cassation ordered a retrial for Sheikh Ali Salman on the same charges. Over the summer 2016, the Government of Bahrain closed Al-Wefaq Political Society and auctioned off the organization’s assets.

    Bahraini authorities have also targeted former Secretary-General of Waad Political Society, Ebrahim Sharif. Authorities have repeatedly arrested Sharif on charges that violate his right to free expression. Most recently, Bahraini officials arrested Sharif on 12 July 2015 for charges related solely to a speech in which he peacefully criticized the government. A court sentenced him to one year in prison. That arrest came just three weeks after Sharif had served time for a previous sentence stemming from his involvement in the 2011 pro-democracy movement. Though Sharif completed his one-year term and is now out of prison, the prosecution is reportedly seeking to appeal in order to increase the original sentence, in a move mirroring the increased sentence against Sheikh Ali Salman. Sharif’s next hearing is scheduled for 7 November 2016.

     

    The charges against Fadhel Abbas, Nabeel Rajab, Sheikh Ali Salman, and Ebrahim Sharif violate their rights to free expression under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), a treaty to which Bahrain acceded in 2006. Under Article 19 of the ICCPR, “everyone shall have the right to freedom of expression… regardless of frontiers, either orally, in writing or in print, in the form of art, or through any other media of [their] choice.” Additionally, Recommendation 1722(h) of the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry (BICI), whose proposed reforms King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa claims have been fully implemented, calls on the Government of Bahrain to drop charges and commute sentences of all persons convicted of crimes related to free speech. On the contrary, the government continues to punish activists and human rights defenders for exercising their basic human rights to free expression, assembly, and association.

     

    The undersigned organizations call on the Government of Bahrain to:

    • Immediately release Fadhel Abbas, Nabeel Rajab, and Sheikh Ali Salman, and drop all charges against them, as they violate the right to freedom of expression;
    • End the judicial harassment of Ebrahim Sharif for charges that violate his rights to freedom of expression;
    • Release all prisoners of conscience who are currently imprisoned for charges related to their free expression, assembly, and association.
     

    Signed,

    Americans for Democracy & Human Rights in Bahrain (ADHRB)

    Bahrain Center for Human Rights (BCHR)

    Bahrain Institute for Rights & Democracy (BIRD)

    European Center for Democracy & Human Rights (ECDHR)

     
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    25 human rights organizations have signed an urgent appeal letter to Ms Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, and Vice-President of the EU Commission, to ask for a clear, public stance on Nabeel Rajab's case and the human rights abuses in Bahrain.

    Access the letter in pdf format here.

     

    To: Federica Mogherini

         High Representative of the European Union for Foreign
         Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the
         European Commission

     

          European Commission
          Rue de la Loi/Wetstraat 200
          1049 Brussels

                                                                                                                                                                       

    Dear HR/VP Federica Mogherini,

    The Government of Bahrain continues to arbitrarily detain Nabeel Rajab, president of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights (BCHR), founding director of the Gulf Centre for Human Rights (GCHR) and Deputy Secretary General of FIDH, on charges related to his rights to free expression and his work as a human rights defender. We write to ask you to publicly speak out against this clear violation of human rights, and to make clear the European Union’s stance on Rajab’s case and the human rights crackdown in Bahrain.

    Rajab’s hearing is scheduled for 31 October, when he is expected to be sentenced to up to 15 years in prison. Rajab has already been held in pre-trial detention for 137 days, mainly in solitary confinement. His health has seriously deteriorated as a consequence of poor detention conditions and lack of sustained medical assistance.

    Rajab has been detained since 13 June 2016, based on charges related to his comments on Twitter, documenting allegations of torture in Bahrain’s Jau Prison and criticizing the escalating humanitarian crisis caused by the Saudi-led coalition airstrikes in Yemen. Rajab faces three charges in relation to these tweets, including “defaming a statutory body,” “offending a foreign country,” and “disseminating false news in a time of war,” for which he faces up to 15 years in prison.

    On 4 September, the New York Times published Rajab’s “Letter from a Bahraini jail”, addressed to the US authorities. In it, he criticised his country for being one “that punishes its people for thinking, that prevents its citizens from exercising their basic rights.” The following day, on 5 September, Bahrain’s Public Prosecutor charged Rajab with “intentionally broadcasting false news and malicious rumours abroad impairing the prestige of the state,” which carries an additional one-year prison term if he is convicted.

    Rajab’s case has sparked international outrage from government officials like the spokesperson of the US Department of State, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon, and members of the EU Parliament who have all denounced the arrest of Rajab. Whilst we appreciate these efforts, we reiterate our deep concerns over his health and freedom.

    We, the undersigned NGOs, believe Rajab is being targeted as a human rights defender by the Bahraini authorities in an attempt to silence all forms of dissent and suppress freedom of expression in the kingdom. All charges against Rajab are in violation of his fundamental human rights - in particular the right to freedom of expression.

    In light of the alarming developments in Rajab’s case, who could be sentenced to 15 years in prison on 31 October, we urge you to dispatch an official delegation to the Kingdom of Bahrain, to expressly address EU concerns about the human rights situation in Bahrain, and to support the release of Rajab, and of all other human rights defenders imprisoned in Bahrain.

    Rajab’s sentencing is the latest in a series of Bahraini government actions restricting civil society space. The government penalizes criticism and human rights work as criminal activities, and Rajab’s prosecution aims to silence the last remaining voice in Bahrain, as well as to instill a culture of fear and impunity. It follows the dissolution of Al-Wefaq, the largest political party in the country, by the Ministry of Justice, the prosecution of over 60 shia clerics for protesting since June, and the imposition of travel bans against around 20 human rights activists, ahead of UNHRC sessions in June and September this year.

    Rajab has suffered for his human rights activism since 2011, including prison sentences between 2012-14 and in 2015. In 2014, the prosecution imposed a travel ban on him after his return from an advocacy trip in Europe, where he visited the UNHRC in Geneva, the European Parliament in Brussels, and other European capitals. This posed a heavy restriction on his human rights work.

    Rajab’s comments on Twitter, documenting torture in Bahrain’s Jau Prison and criticising the escalating humanitarian crisis caused by the Saudi-led coalition airstrikes in Yemen led to his arrest on 2 April 2015. Authorities released him on 13 July 2015 when he received a royal pardon during Ramadan for his previous six-month sentence, but prosecutors did not close the cases and ordered his re-arrest on 13 June 2016.

    We urge you not to remain silent in the face of gross violations of basic human rights.

    We look forward to your reply.

     

    Signatories,

     

    Aabdulnabi Alekry, Bahrain Human Rights Organization (BHRO)

    Americans for Democracy & Human Rights in Bahrain (ADHRB)

    Bahrain Center for Human Rights (BCHR)

    Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy (BIRD)

    Bahrain Press Association (BPA)

    Bahrain Youth Society for Human Rights (BYSHR)

    Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies (CIHRS)

    Canadian Journalists for Free Expression

    CIVICUS

    English PEN

    European - Bahraini Organisation for Human rights (EBOHR)

    European Center for Democracy and Human Rights (ECDHR)

    Freedom House

    Front Line Defenders

    Gulf Centre for Human Rights (GCHR)

    IFEX

    Index on Censorship

    International Media Support (IMS)

    International Service for Human Rights (ISHR)

    Lawyers’ Rights Watch Canada

    No Peace Without Justice

    RAFTO

    REDRESS

    Salam for Democracy and Human Rights

    Vivarta

     
     
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    Deputy Secretary General of the Al-Wefaq National Islamic Society Sheikh Hussein Al-Daihi called on the people of Bahrain and Al-Wefaq supporters to deal with Al-Wefaq suspension as "a point of failure by the authorities" and "use it to serve the interest of our national project, for the sake of shifting towards justice and democracy".

    Read the full article here

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    Press freedom declined to its lowest point in 12 years in 2015, as political, criminal, and terrorist forces sought to co-opt or silence the media in their broader struggle for power.

    Bahrain, ranked 186 in the study that included 199 countries, scored among the lowest ranks in the annual report issued by Freedom House organization, after putting the country under the "Not Free" category on the level of freedom of press, and freedom of the internet.

    Read the full report here

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    Bahrain’s main Shiite opposition group has appealed against a court ruling that it should be dissolved over terrorism-related charges, a judicial official said on Sunday.

    "Al Wefaq has filed an appeal to the Court of Cassation" against its dissolution and the seizure of its assets.

    A court ordered the group’s dissolution in July for "harbouring terrorism", inciting violence and encouraging demonstrations which threatened to spark sectarian strife.

      The decision, upheld by an appeals court in September, drew strong criticism from UN chief Ban Ki-moon

      Read the full article here.

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      Officials in Bahrain have prevented the wife and infant son of a London-based dissident from leaving the country to join him.

      It is the latest example of a crackdown by the Gulf state, which has been criticised by human rights groups for imposing travel bans and arresting its opponents.

      Duaa Alwadaei was prevented by Bahraini immigration officers from boarding a London-bound flight on Wednesday. The move came hours after her husband, Sayed Ahmed Alwadaei, director of advocacy at the Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy (Bird), protested against a visit by the king of Bahrain to Downing Street.

      Alwadaei claims that during a seven-hour interrogation, a senior official told his wife she was being questioned and subjected to a travel ban because of his work. On the same day his wife was detained, Alwadaei had attended the protest outside No 10 against the visit of the king of Bahrain, Hamad bin Isa al Khalifa. Two protesters were briefly held by police.

      Read the full article here.

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      The Oct. 27 editorial “ ‘Is this the kind of ally America wants?’ ” highlighted the Obama administration’s myopic policy on Bahrain. The smallest country in the Middle East has manipulated its relationship with Washington for years, continuing to receive political support and military assistance from the United States while rejecting meaningful reform. The State Department has too often appeared paralyzed in the face of the regime’s attacks on moderate opposition and human rights activists, unwilling or unable to effectively respond. This inaction has only encouraged further violations, with all political dissent now effectively strangled.

      Read the full article here.

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      31 October 2016 - Today, the High Criminal Court postponed the trial of prominent human rights defender Nabeel Rajab, President of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights (BCHR) to 15 December 2016. We, the undersigned NGOs, condemn the arbitrary and baseless detention of Rajab and call for his immediate and unconditional release.

      The High Criminal Court postponed the trial of Rajab for the fourth time in a row since the commencement of the trial on 11 July 2016. The reason for the postponement is to hire an expert from the Cyber Crime Unit to verify that the Twitter handle in question is managed by him. The reopening of his case throws a light on the lack of evidence of any wrongdoing.

      Rajab is being prosecuted in relation to tweets and retweets about torture in Jau Prison and the human rights violations in the war on Yemen. The prosecution of Rajab is based on  Articles 133, 215, and 216 of Bahrain’s Penal Code over charges of “false or malicious news, statements, or rumours,” “offending a foreign country” (Saudi Arabia), and “offending a statutory body” - for which he may be sentenced to up to 15 years in prison. All these charges relate to Rajab’s exercise of his free expression.

      In September, Bahrain’s prosecution brought new charges against him for “undermining the prestige of the state” after the New York Times published his opinion piece, Letter from a Bahraini Jail. This charge could carry an additional year. In his letter, Rajab criticized his country for being one “that punishes its people for thinking, that prevents its citizens from exercising their basic rights.”

      Rajab has spent 140 days in detention since his arrest on 13 June 2016. We are deeply concerned about Rajab still being detained considering his deteriorating health condition. Rajab’s family believes that the unhygienic condition in his cell is possibly the reason for worsening of his health condition.

      In the week before Rajab’s hearing on 31 October, members of the European Parliament have voiced their concerns over the case of Rajab and the overall human rights situation in Bahrain. MEPs Beatriz Becerra, Julie Ward, Javier Nart, Mark Demesmaeker, Ignazio Corrao and Ana Gomes called for the release of human rights defender Nabeel Rajab.

      Rajab’s case has attracted the attention of several other prominent figures, including government officials, the spokesperson of the US Department of State, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon and members of the EU Parliament. His case has been discussed at the 33rd Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council, and in aletterfrom 34 human rights organizations calling on the King of Bahrain to release Rajab.

      Friday last week the US Department of State repeated its calls for Rajab’s immediate release and rejected all charges against him.

      We believe that the prosecution of Rajab for the peaceful exercise goes against Bahrain’s international human rights commitment, and raises concerns over its willingness to safeguard the rights of its citizens.

      The undersigned NGOs call on the Bahraini government to:

      • Immediately and unconditionally release Nabeel Rajab and all political prisoners detained for peacefully exercising their right to freedom of speech and expression;
      • Drop all charges against Nabeel Rajab, which are related to his right to freedom of expression and freedom of speech; and
      • Abide by international legislation upholding the right to freedom of expression, without any restrictions or arbitrary legal procedures;
      • Provide compensation for his arbitrary imprisonment.
       

      Signed,

      Americans for Democracy & Human Rights in Bahrain

      Bahrain Center for Human Rights

      Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy

      European Centre for Democracy and Human Rights

       
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      Leading Bahraini human rights defender Nabeel Rajab is due a court verdict on Monday after a sham trial.

      Rajab wrote the following letter from jail to the co-chairs of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission in the U.S. Congress, Representatives Jim McGovern (D-MA) and Joseph Pitts (R-PA). The commission has held a series of hearings on Bahrain in recent years, most recently in September 2016, when I testified about Nabeel Rajab’s case.

      Read the letter here.

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      The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a partnership of FIDH and the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT), has received new information about the case of Ghada Jamsheer and her upcoming trial. 

      The Observatory has been informed by the Gulf Centre for Human Rights (GCHR) about the continued arbitrary detention and judicial harassment of Ms. Ghada Jamsheer, a writer and blogger, Head of the Women's Petition Committee, an organisation which campaigns for the rights and dignity of women in the Shari'ah family courts.

      According to information received, on November 7, 2016, Ms. Ghada Jamsheer will appear before Manama’s High Criminal Court of Appeal, on charges of defamation related to messages posted via her Twitter account criticising corruption in the management of King Hamad Hospital in Bahrain, which is run by members of the ruling family.

      Read the full letter here

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      Bahrain on Monday postponed until Dec. 15 the trial of prominent democracy activist Nabeel Rajab to permit more investigation of a Twitter account he is accused of using to publish criticism of the government, his human rights group said.

      Rajab's Bahrain Centre for Human Rights said the High Criminal Court postponed the trial for a fourth time to enable it to hire a cyber crime expert to verify that the Twitter handle in question was managed by him.

      Read the full article here

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      The trial of prominent Bahraini human rights activist Nabeel Rajab– president of the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights – has been postponed for a fourth consecutive time to enable the country’s high criminal court to hire a cybercrime expert to verify who manages his Twitter account.

      A new trial date has been set for 15 December.

      Read the full article here.

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      Gulf governments have attempted to silence peaceful critics in response to a wave of online activism in recent years, Human Rights Watch said in an interactive website that began operating today. The governments have responded to online criticism with surveillance, arrests, and other arbitrary punishments.

      In a nod to Twitter’s 140-character limit, this interactive website presents the profiles of 140 prominent Bahraini, Kuwaiti, Omani, Qatari, Saudi, and Emirati social and political rights activists and dissidents and describes their struggles to resist government efforts to silence them. All 140 have faced government retaliation for exercising their right to freedom of expression, and many have been arrested, tried, and sentenced to fines or prison. Profiled activists include Nabeel Rajab and Zainab al-Khawaja from Bahrain, Waleed Abu al-Khair and Mohammed Fahad al-Qahtani from Saudi Arabia, and Ahmed Mansoor and Mohammed al-Roken from the United Arab Emirates.

      Read the entire report here.

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      The International Day to End Impunity for Crimes Against Journalists, which is dedicated to all members of the media who have suffered violence due to their profession, is marked on 2 November 2016. On this day, the Bahrain Center for Human Rights (BCHR) renews calls for accountability and an end to impunity for the Bahraini journalists and media professionals who have fallen victim to severe violations since 2011, including arrest, torture and loss of life.            

      Blogger Zakariya Rashid Hassan Al-Ashiri died at 40 years old under torture on 9 April 2011. The Ministry of Interior claimed at the time that he had died as a result of sickle cell anemia complications. However, the marks of harsh beating and bruises on his body were all too visible. Al-Ashiri, moderator of www.dair.net online forum, was arrested on 2 April 2011 on charges of allegedly “inciting hatred, publishing false news, promoting sectarianism and calling for the overthrow of the regime” via e-forums.

      The Bahrain International Commission of Inquiry (BICI) confirmed in its report that the death of Al-Ashiri was attributed to torture (Case No.24 in the report). On 12 March 2013, the first higher criminal court acquitted all five policemen who were charged with the beating that led to the death of Al-Ashiri. The crime of torturing Al-Ashiri to death remains without accountability.  

      Kareem Fakhrawi was a businessman, founder of Bahrain’s first educational bookstore and a founder of the Al-Wasat newspaper. Fakhrawi died at the age of 49 on 12 April 2011 while in custody, due to torture. He was last seen at the Exhibition Centre Police Station on 3 April as he went to the police station to file a report and complaint about a raid on one of his relative's houses. His death has been documented by the BICI report (Case No.25) and confirmed to be attributed to torture. Two security men from the National Security Apparatus were put on trial on charges of “beating that led to death without intention.” The criminal court initially sentenced them to seven years’ imprisonment, however on 27 October 2013, an appeal court reduced the sentence to three years’ imprisonment. There is no confirmation that the security men have indeed served any prison time for the crime committed.

       

      Ahmed Ismael Hussain Al-Samadi, a citizen journalist who was video documenting protests, was killed after a gunshot in his right thigh (lower abdomen) fired by armed civilians. He died at only 22 years old on 31 March 2012 while he was filming a gathering of protesters along a highway near his home in a small Bahraini village, who were being attacked by security forces. Although the medical examiner's report had listed his cause of death as a gunshot wound, his death certificate, which was needed to open a police investigation, mentioned nothing about a bullet. During the following interrogations, several witnesses were called for questioning, in which the interrogators allegedly focused more on the whereabouts of the camera than on Al-Samadi’s assailant. In spite of attempts by his family to achieve justice, no one has ever been put on trial.

       

      The above three cases of death have appeared in the 2016 UNESCO Director-General's Report on the Safety of Journalists and the Danger of Impunity.

      While killers of journalists remain free, the Bahraini government continues to target journalists with arrest and imprisonment. Among the Bahraini journalists who have been sentenced due to their professional undertakings are photographers Ahmed Humaidan, Hussam Soroor, Ahmed Zain Al-Deen, Mustafa Rabea and Sayed Ahmed Al-Mousawi, who have all received 10-year prison sentences for their work. Al-Mousawi also had his citizenship revoked. Most recently, Mahmood Suroor received a 15-year prison sentence, which was issued on 21 April 2016.

      BCHR calls on the Bahraini government to:

      • End the policy of impunity by those in government and those in power who are responsible for the failure to take serious steps to hold human rights abusers accountable for the grave crimes they have committed;  
      • Sign the Optional Protocol of the Convention Against Torture (OPCAT) in order to strengthen legal accountability for torturers; and
      • Immediately release all wrongfully detained and/or imprisoned journalists, and photographers.
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