On Monday 10 September at the 39th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council, Americans for Democracy in Bahrain (ADHRB) delivered an oral intervention during the Item 3 Clustered Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteurs on the rights of older persons and on water and sanitation. In the intervention, ADHRB raised Hassan Mushaima’s case, highlighing that he is serving a life sentence in Bahrain’s Jau Prison and is suffering from medical conditions that require medical care, although he is being refused such care. The intervention also called attention to the Bahraini authorities’ cutting off of the water supply to Jau Prison. Continue reading for the text of the intervention, or click here for a PDF of the remarks.

Mr. President,

Alsalam and ADHRB welcomes the reports of both Special Rapporteurs, and wishes to bring to their attention the case of Hassan Mushaima and recent water cuts to Jau Prison in Bahrain.

Hassan Mushaima is a 70-year-old arbitrarily detained political opposition leader in Bahrain. He is serving a life sentence in the notorious Jau Prison, where his access to medical care has been restricted despite his advanced age and multiple chronic illnesses. Mr. Mushaima suffers from diabetes, high blood pressure, and gout, for which he receives medication only sporadically. His cancer is in remission, but he requires regular screenings every six months. However, prison authorities have conditioned his access to cancer screening on further rights abuse. He was not screened for cancer from September 2016 until August 2018, at which time his son, Ali Mushaima, launched a hunger strike in protest of his mistreatment.

Hassan Mushaima is just one of many individuals currently suffering in Jau Prison. In early July, reports surfaced that the prison administration was preventing water from being supplied in multiple buildings within the complex, including those which house individuals under the age of 21. Prisoners have reported that they are only given one cup of water per day, and that they are forced to drink water from unsanitary bathroom sinks. Further, the water is running to the buildings for only one hour per day, which means that prisoners are unable to shower. At least one prisoner was sent to solitary confinement for asking about the water cuts.

With this in mind, ADHRB asks the Special Rapporteurs to call for Hassan Mushaima’s immediate release and access to medical care, and to raise the issue of water cuts with the Bahraini authorities to ensure that all individuals in detention in Bahrain have access to clean water.

Thank you.