MEPs Send Letter to Government of Bahrain Raising Concerns ahead of Christmas Day Death Penalty Hearing

20 December 2019 – Today, twenty Members of European Parliament sent a letter to Shaikh Khalid bin Ali bin Abdullah Al Khalifa, the Minister of Justice, Islamic Affairs and Endowment in Bahrain, raising concerns about the case of Mohamed Ramadhan and Husain Moosa. The verdict in their case, originally due 27 November 2019, was arbitrarily postponed to 25 December – Christmas Day.

In the letter, the MEPs described the rescheduling of their case to Christmas, a major holiday in many Western countries, as “an attempt by Bahraini authorities to undermine the international community’s ability to monitor and react to the situation.” The MEPs also noted the 31 December 2018 Court of Cassation verdict for human rights defender Nabeel Rajab as a similar attempt to avoid scrutiny.

The MEPs also raised the allegations of torture raised by Ramadhan and Moosa, and urged the Bahraini government to:

Postpone the verdict to a later date in the cases of the Mohamed Ramadhan Issa Ali Hussain and Hussain Ali Moosa Mohamed in view to ensure it is the outcome of a trial that has fully complied with international fair trial standards that excluded evidence obtained under torture, and without recourse to the death penalty;

Promptly carry out credible and independent investigations into all allegations of torture, in particular those made in the cases of Mohamed Ramadhan and Hussain Moosa, and take appropriate measures to bring the perpetrators to account;

Immediately institute a moratorium on the death penalty with the aim of permanent abolition;

Release all illegally detained prisoners, including human rights defenders arbitrarily arrested, detained, charged and convicted for carrying out their legitimate and peaceful human rights activities”