Freedom House Condemns Death Sentences in Bahrain | Freedom House

Freedom House Condemns Death Sentences in Bahrain

Washington

Freedom House condemns the death sentences of two Bahraini citizens upheld by a special appeals court on Sunday, and calls upon authorities to take measures to ensure the rights of citizens to due process and to end its efforts to persecute those who have demonstrated for political reform.
 
An appeals court upheld the conviction of Ali Abdullah Hassan Alsingace and Abdul Aziz Abdul Redha Ibrahim Hussein, who were charged along with five others with killing two police officers during anti-government protests that swept the country in the weeks after the revolutions in Egypt and Tunisia. The original sentence was handed down by the National Safety Court, which was created by royal decree. More than 400 detainees have been referred to National Safety Courts, of which 312 were later released. No information is available on those still detained and they have not been permitted contact with families or legal counsel.
 
“The lack of due process in Bahrain is disturbing. Authorities have arbitrarily prosecuted protesters but have failed to investigate those responsible for the deaths of protesters,” said David J. Kramer, executive director at Freedom House.  “President Obama last week spoke out against mass arrests and brute force against peaceful protesters in Bahrain and called for dialogue between the Bahraini government and the opposition.  He now needs to ratchet up the pressure on the Bahraini government to begin such a dialogue and to respect the human and political right of all Bahraini citizens.”
 
The Bahraini government has continued to crack down on pro-reform protests. Today, teargas grenades were fired into the home of the prominent human rights activist and critic of the government, Nabeel Rajab. Several protesters have died in custody under suspicious circumstances; traditional and online journalists have been deported, arrested, held incommunicado, and some were reportedly tortured; and medical professionals have been unfairly arrested for treating some and “not saving” others. Additionally, many who protested have been threatened, lost their jobs or homes, or been prevented from continuing their studies.
 
Bahrain is ranked Not Free in Freedom in the World 2011, Freedom House's survey of political rights and civil liberties, and Not Free in Freedom of the Press 2011.
 
For more information on Bahrain, visit:
 
 
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Freedom House is an independent watchdog organization that supports democratic change, monitors the status of freedom around the world, and advocates for democracy and human rights.

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