Profiles in Persecution: Hasan AbdulNabi Hasan

Hasan AbdulNabi Hasan is a 23-year-old Bahraini man who was arrested on the morning of his wedding day. He has since been subjected to torture and convicted in an unfair trial. He remains in Jau Prison.

On 25 June 2018, at approximately 2:00am, Hasan was arrested by more than 50 officers from the Ministry of Interior’s riot police (most likely the Special Security Force Command), the Criminal Investigations Directorate (CID), National Security Agency (NSA), and officers in plain clothing and masks. The officers arrested him from his home and did not produce a warrant or provide a reason for his arrest

The officers took Hasan to the CID, where officers subjected him to torture to confess to the charges against him. He was able to make a brief phone call four hours after his arrest to inform his family of his location. They held him at the CID for two weeks, with Hasan being permitted to make short phone calls throughout. Hasan confessed, and the confession was used in the trial against him.

On 9 July 2018, the officers transferred Hasan to the Office of Public Prosecution. Hasan was charged with illegal assembly, rioting, importing explosives and weapons, harboring a fugitive, and joining terrorist groups. He was ordered detained pending trial, and transferred to Dry Dock Detention Center. This was the first time he met with his lawyer.

On 11 December 2019, Hasan was convicted of the charges against him and sentenced to life imprisonment and a fine of 100,000 Bahraini dinars. He was convicted in a mass trial of 32 defendants, in which 22 were convicted in absentia. He was transferred to Jau Prison, where he remains.

Bahrain’s treatment of Hasan is in violation of Bahrain’s international human rights obligations, including under 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 warrantless arrest and detention without charges is in violation of Hasan’s right to freedom from arbitrary detention in Article 9 of the ICCPR. The torture the CID officers subjected Hasan to is in violation of the prohibition on torture enshrined in the CAT and Article 7 of the ICCPR, and the use of his confession obtained through torture is in violation of Article 15 of the CAT and contributed to his unfair trial, in violation of Article 14 of the ICCPR.

Americans for Democracy & Human Rights in Bahrain (ADHRB) calls on the Government of Bahrain to release Hasan and annul his criminal convictions, in light of the unfair trial proceedings. If serious criminal charges can be maintained against Hasan, we call for any re-trial to be conducted in accordance with international standards for a fair trial. We further call for an investigation into Hasan’s allegations of torture, with a view to holding the perpetrators accountable. Finally, we call on the Government of Bahrain to provide Hasan with compensation for the violation of his human rights.