All Is Not Well In Bahrain

Bahrain seems to be idyllic.

But there seems to be simmering discontent among the populace about the repressive rule .

It is a ticking time bomb, it might explode at any time.

The same applies to Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

Under the glitter they are boiling.

Read On.

Violence in Bahrain
Violence in Bahrain
The second anniversary of Bahrain’s popular uprising was marked by renewed violence, resulting in the death of a 16-year old boy. In the video, filmed right after the teenager’s death, a desperate protester can be seen risking his life to stand up to the police.
The victim’s name was Hussein al-Jaziri. According to opposition websites, the teenager was killed by fragmentary bullets. Overwhelmed by this death, which he had just witnessed, a protester walked up to police and screamed at them. The policemen tried to intimidate him, but seemed thrown off balance by the protester’s daring.
This footage exemplifies the standstill at which the Bahraini opposition finds itself, faced with unyielding government repression. Since the start of the uprising, the confirmed death toll has risen to 82 protesters, including nine children.
Bahrain, a primarily Shiite country (Shiites make up about 75% of the population), is ruled by a Sunni monarchy. Since February 2011, members of the Shiite community, who claim they are discriminated against, have frequently protested in the streets.

Human Rights Violations.

Publication of a Judicial Observation Mission Report

19 Feb 2013

The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a joint programme of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) and the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT), publishes today a report, which presents findings of a judicial observation mission conducted on the trial in appeal of prominent human rights defender Nabeel Rajab. The report concludes that a series of violations of the right to fair trial marred the judicial process and that Mr. Nabeel Rajab is suffering judicial harassment for merely advocating for and exercising the right to peaceful assembly in Bahrain.

Read full report

While February 14, 2013 marks the second anniversary of the start of pro-democracy protests in Bahrain, Mr. Nabeel Rajab, Deputy Secretary General of FIDH, President of the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights (BCHR) and Director of the Gulf Centre for Human Rights (GCHR), remains detained in Jaw Prison, serving a two-year prison sentence. On December 11, 2012 the Appeals Court in Bahrain confirmed his conviction on charges of calling for and participating in peaceful gatherings on three occasions. As of today, he has been in detention for 217 days.

The Observatory sees the detention and sentence of Mr. Nabeel Rajab as arbitrary and solely aimed at sanctioning and preventing his human rights activities. Indeed, Mr. Rajab has been targeted for his tireless efforts at highlighting gross human rights violations in Bahrain, in particular since the beginning of the popular uprising in the country in February 2011 through the use of Twitter, Facebook, and other social network tools and media outlets as well as his participation in public gatherings.

“Mr. Rajab’s trial reflects Bahrain’s policy and practice of criminalising the exercise of the right to freedoms of association, expression and peaceful assembly and silencing human rights defenders and other dissenting voices” declared Gerald Staberock, OMCT Secretary General.

Between September and December 2012, the Observatory carried out four missions to Manama to monitor the hearings of Mr. Rajab’s trial. The report recounts the details of these missions and demonstrates that the trial in appeal against Mr. Nabeel Rajab failed to comply with international standards of fair trial. “The entire procedure was fraught with serious human rights violations from the time of arrest, through detention, trial and conviction” said Souhayr Belhassen, FIDH President.

Mr. Nabeel Rajab was initially detained on July 9, 2012 for his participation in “illegal” assemblies in January, February and March 2012 during which the authorities alleged that acts of violence were committed by some participants. Said gatherings were organised to call for the release of human rights defenders and political activists, to denounce corruption, to call for political and economic reforms, to denounce human rights violations and to call for a fair distribution of wealth and an end to torture.


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