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Amnesty Int'l: Bahrain: Man held incommunicado at risk of torture: Ahmed Mohammad Saleh al-Arab

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UA: 21/14 Index: MDE 11/008/2014 Bahrain Date: 4 February 2014

URGENT ACTION

Ahmed Mohammad Saleh al-Arab continues to be denied family visits after 27 days of detention. There are fears the authorities are hiding that he has been tortured while held incommunicado. He has been denied medical care.

Ahmed Mohammad Saleh al-Arab, aged 22, was arrested on 9 January 2014 during a police raid on the family home of one of his friends in Hamad Town, central Bahrain, where he was hiding. He was forced into hiding after his arrest and torture in February 2012 during protests marking the first anniversary of the uprising in Bahrain. During his arrest on 9 January, Ahmed and his friend were beaten and other people from the house were searched and threatened.

On the same day, security forces subsequently raided Ahmed al-Arab’s family home in Bani Jamra. Security forces entered and searched the house without a warrant. During the search, security officers denied having arrested Ahmed, although a family member saw him inside the police vehicle as he was being beaten.

Despite requests made by Ahmed al-Arab’s family to the Criminal Investigations Directorate (CID), the Public Prosecutor‘s Office and the police, they remained without news of him until 13 January, when he made a very brief phone call to his father to say he was fine and then hung up. His family received similar phone calls at least six times afterwards. At the same time, they continued to receive court and police summons ordering Ahmed to appear in court as a suspect in relation to at least six different cases.

On 29 January Ahmed phoned his family to inform them that he was transferred to Jaw Prison. On 4 February he called his family again to say he has been forced to sleep on the floor, in the open air and denied medical treatment for the shoulder injuries he sustained as a result of being hanged by his arms for five days. He said he feels he may have broken ribs and has been deprived of sleep. Ahmed has never been presented before a judge despite his name was amongst others being tried. When his family sought to visit him a few days before in Jaw Prison, they were told they would not be able to do so until 3 March, raising further fears about Ahmed’s health condition.

Please write immediately in Arabic, English or your own language:

  • Urging the Bahraini authorities to provide Ahmed Mohammad Saleh al-Arab with immediate access to his lawyer, family and any medical care he may need;
  • Calling on them to investigate allegations that Ahmed Mohammad Saleh al-Arab was tortured and otherwise ill-treated and bring those responsible to justice;
  • Calling on them to either charge Ahmed Mohammad Saleh al-Arab with a recognizably criminal offence or release him.

PLEASE SEND APPEALS BEFORE 18 MARCH 2014 TO:

King

Shaikh Hamad bin ‘Issa Al Khalifa

Office of His Majesty the King

P.O. Box 555

Rifa’a Palace, al-Manama, Bahrain

Fax: +973 1766 4587 (keep trying)

Salutation: Your Majesty

 

Minister of Interior

Shaikh Rashid bin ‘Abdullah Al Khalifa

Ministry of Interior

P.O. Box 13, al-Manama, Bahrain

Fax: +973 1723 2661

Twitter: @moi_Bahrain

Salutation: Your Excellency

 

And copies to:

Minister of Justice and Islamic Affairs

Shaikh Khalid bin Ali bin Abdullah Al Khalifa

Ministry of Justice and Islamic Affairs

P. O. Box 450, al-Manama, Bahrain

Fax: +973 1753 1284

Email: minister@justice.gov.bh

Twitter: @Khaled_Bin_Ali

Also send copies to diplomatic representatives accredited to your country. Please insert local diplomatic addresses below:

Name Address 1 Address 2 Address 3 Fax Fax number Email Email address Salutation Salutation

 

Additional Information

Ahmed Mohammad Saleh al-Arab was arrested for the first time on 14 February 2012 during demonstrations to mark the first anniversary of the uprising in Bahrain. He was then kept in police vehicle for several hours during which he was repeatedly beaten. Afterwards, he was taken to the CID, where he was again beaten until he fainted. He was interrogated about his relationship with the “14 February Movement” and received further beating upon denying any connection with the movement.

His family had no news of him for two days despite requests to the Public Prosecution Office, the CID and the police. Late on the second day of his arrest, he phoned his family to inform them that he was in the prison hospital. On the third day, his father received a phone call to come to pick him up.

Following uprising in Bahrain in February 2011, Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry (BICI), appointed by Royal Order on 29 June 2011, was charged with investigating and reporting on human rights violations committed in connection with the 2011 protests. At the launch of the BICI report in November 2011, the government publicly committed itself to implementing BICI’s recommendations. The report recounted the government’s response to the mass protests and documented wide-ranging human rights abuses. Among its key recommendations, the report called on the government to bring to justice those responsible for human rights violations, including torture and excessive use of force, and carry out independent investigations into allegations of torture.

The establishment of BICI and its report was considered to be a groundbreaking initiative, but the promise of meaningful reform has been betrayed by the government’s unwillingness to implement key recommendations around accountability; this includes its failure to carry out independent, effective and transparent investigations into allegations of torture and other ill-treatment and excessive use of force, and to prosecute all those who gave the orders to commit human rights abuses. For further information see the November 2012 report Reform shelved, repression unleashed (Index: MDE 11/062/2012), http://amnesty.org/en/library/info/MDE11/062/2012/en.

Bahrain’s parliament held an extraordinary session on 28 July 2013, after which it submitted 22 recommendations to the King, Shaikh Hamad Bin ‘Issa Al Khalifa. The recommendations toughen punishments laid out in the 2006 anti-terrorism law. A few days later the King issued several decrees further curtailing the right to freedom of expression, including banning all protests, sit-ins and public gatherings in Manama indefinitely and giving the security forces additional sweeping powers.

A joint statement signed by 47 countries at the UN Human Rights Council on 9 September expressed serious concern about the ongoing human rights violations in Bahrain.

Name: Ahmed Mohammad Saleh al-Arab

Gender m/f: m

UA: 21/14 Index: MDE 11/008/2014 Issue Date: 4 February 2014

https://www.amnesty.org/en/library/info/MDE11/008/2014/en

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