Profiles in Persecution: Sayed Hadi Ahmed

Sayed Hadi Ahmed is a minor being arbitrarily detained in Bahrain’s Dry Dock Detention Center, meant only for adult populations. He was 15 at the time of his arrest, and has been subjected to torture on multiple occasions.

At midnight on 13 December 2016, Sayed Hadi was asleep at his grandfather’s home in Bani Jamra. Officers forcibly entered the house, woke him at gunpoint, and arrested him. The unidentified officers did not produce a warrant at the time of the arrest, and Sayed Hadi’s parents only learned that he was under investigation three days later. They were not allowed their first visit until 9 January 2017, almost a month later, when Sayed Hadi was transferred to Dry Dock Detention Center.

During this month-long period, officers severely beat Sayed Hadi during interrogation and denied him legal counsel, visits, and external contacts. Signs of this torture were evident on his face and body. Officers repeatedly transferred Sayed Hadi from Al-Badee police station to the police station near roundabout 17 in order to conduct these interrogations. In mid-December 2017, officers placed Sayed Hadi in solitary confinement at Dry Dock for two days before torturing him again. They then brought him to a separate area of the prison for high-profile criminals, where he was held with adults. As of 21 January 2018, Ahmed remains there, away from the general population, constantly handcuffed and shackled, and denied outdoor time.

Due to the torture that Sayed Hadi has endured, he suffers from weakened vision, as well as overall deterioration of health, and is in need of glasses. Ahmed requested a doctor when meeting with a Ministry of Interior (MoI) officer, but he has not been examined. Complaints from Sayed Hadi’s family on his health have led to no action by the MoI or prison officers.

The police charged Sayed Hadi with exploding a gas tank in Duraz, for which he was convicted and sentenced to three years (reduced to two on appeal). The police have also charged Sayed Hadi with allegedly founding a group for the purpose of funding and fabricating explosives, for which he is still awaiting trial.

Bahrain’s actions against Sayed Hadi violate international law, including the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (Article 9), and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (Article 12).

ADHRB calls upon Bahrain to uphold its human rights obligations by annulling Sayed Hadi’s conviction and ensuring that any subsequent trial is consistent with due process and fair trial rights. We additionally urge the authorities to investigate claims of torture and ill treatment by prison officials, to hold those officials accountable, and to keep Sayed Hadi’s family informed on the status of his complaints. ADHRB further urges Bahraini officials to provide Sayed Hadi with necessary medical care, including proper treatment for the injuries he sustained while in prison.