NGOs call for the release of activist Zainab al-Khawaja
Americans for Democracy & Human Rights in Bahrain (ADHRB), Bahrain Center for Human Rights (BCHR), Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy (BIRD), Justice Human Rights Organization (JHRO), and European Centre for Democracy and Human Right (ECDHR) condemn in the strongest terms the arrest of Zainab and her son over charges merely related to her activism and exercise of free expression. On 14 March 2016, at 3:45 P.M., security forces raided the house of Zainab al-Khawaja’s in-laws’ house asking for her. When they did not find her, they raided Zainab’s apartment where she was arrested with her 15-month-old son, Abdulhadi. She was then taken to Al-Hoora police station. Her family were informed that she will be transferred for a medical checkup before transporting her to Isa Town women’s prison.
Updates from the Ground
- Authorities arrested 19 individuals, including 3 children.
- Criminal and appeals courts altered, upheld convictions, and sentenced 9 individuals to 173 years in prison.
- Courts postponed the trials of 9 individuals.
- The Court of Appeal upheld citizenship revocation orders against 2 individuals,Ebrahim Karimi and Ali Isfandiyari. The same court postponed the trial of 9individuals who had their citizenship revoked in 2012 to 21 and 22 March.
- The criminal court sentenced the Twitter handle owner “@Takrooz” to 5 years in prison and a 10,000 dinar fine over remarks he posted deemed insulting to the king.
- A Bahraini court upheld the 3-year prison sentence against a Shia cleric for insulting the king and inciting against another Islamic sect.
- The high criminal court acquitted 9 policemen from charges of physically abusing 13 detainees. Another court decreased the sentence of a policeman from 2 years in prison to 3 months over the same charges.
Saudi Arabia & Other Gulf States
Capital Abuse: The Arbitrary Destruction of Life in Saudi Arabia
8 March 2016 – Geneva, Switzerland – Americans for Democracy & Human Rights in Bahrain (ADHRB), the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), Reprieve, the European Saudi Organization for Human Rights (ESOHR), AL-QST, the European Centre for Democracy & Human Rights (ECDHR), the World Coalition Against the Death Penalty, the Saudi Organization for Rights and Freedoms (AORF), and the Gulf Centre for Human Rights presented a side event at the 31st Session of the Human Rights Council on the use of executions in Saudi Arabia.
Are you a victim of a human rights abuse in Bahrain, Saudi Arabia or other GCC states?
Document your case with the Special Procedures of the United Nations through ADHRB’s UN Complaint Program.