Profiles in Persecution: Hasan Ateya Mubarak

Hasan Ateya Mubarak is a 38-year-old Bahraini citizen who was arbitrarily detained and tortured at the Ministry of Interior’s Criminal Investigations Directorate (CID). He is currently awaiting trial in Dry Dock Detention Center.

At approximately 3:00am on 6 August 2017, officers in plain clothing entered Hasan’s home without a warrant and arrested him. The officers entered the home through his bedroom window, without knocking on the doors. They also entered the home before his wife could put on her hijab. Hasan asked the officers why he was being arrested, but they did not respond. The officers blindfolded Hasan and disappeared him for two days. He was permitted to call his family after those two days and inform them that he was being held in the CID.

Hasan was held at the CID for one month, during which time the officers subjected him to torture through various methods, including physical beatings, electric shock, forced standing, threats to kill his twin brother, and insults to his faith. His older brother Mohamed was also arrested the same night, and the guards tortured them in close enough proximity so that they could hear each other’s screams. During Hasan’s torture, officers questioned him for information concerning his twin brother Husain and to force him to confess to the charges against him.

The authorities charged Hasan with multiple crimes, including possession of weapons, manufacturing of weapons, using weapons without a license, financing terrorism, and training in a terrorist cell. He is being held in Dry Dock pending his ongoing trial, which has not reached a final verdict for over seven months.

Bahrain has violated a number of its international obligations in its treatment of Hasan, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), and the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT). Hasan’s arrest without a warrant is in violation of Bahraini law and international standards, and his lengthy pre-trial detention is arbitrary in violation of the UDHR (Article 9) and the ICCPR (Articles 9 and 14). The use of the methods described to inflict pain for the purposes of punishing or obtaining a confession constitutes torture under Article 1 of the CAT, and the use of such a confession in the ensuing trial against him would constitute a violation of Article 15 of the CAT.

ADHRB calls on Bahrain to uphold its human rights obligations by ensuring that Hasan receives an expedient trial that is consistent with due process and fair trial rights. We particularly urge the Office of Public Prosecution to refrain from using any statements made as a result of torture in the trial against him, in line with Bahrain’s treaty obligations. We additionally urge the courts to reject any evidence obtained through torture. Finally, we call on the authorities to investigate claims of torture and ill treatment by officials and to hold them accountable for their actions.