Today, an oral intervention was delivered at the 43rd Session of the Human Rights Council under Item 4’s General Debate. The intervention highlighted the current human rights situation in Bahrain and that oppositions and human rights defenders are kept behind bars.
Click here for the PDF and you can find the oral statement below.
During the high level segment, Bahrain claimed to be committed to the protection of human rights. However, I would like to provide examples of the current human rights situation.
Firstly, since the 2011 pro-democracy uprising, Bahrain has imposed severe restrictions on the freedom of expression, association and assembly. All opposition parties and independent media have been dissolved, and criticizing the government has become a crime.
Secondly, cooperation between civil society and the government is impossible when opposition leaders and human rights defenders, like Hasan Mushaima, Abdulwahab Husain and Nabeel Rajab, are kept behind bars. Rajab serves a prison sentence for criticizing the government on its involvement in the Yemeni war and the use of torture in Bahraini prisons.
Thirdly, Bahrain proudly announced the Alternative Sentencing Program, which however does not apply to political prisoners.
Fourthly, during a mass-trial in 2019, 167 individuals were convicted for participating in a peaceful sit-in and 139 individuals were charged with terrorism, of whom 138 have been stripped off their nationality.
Lastly, we condemn the re-implementation of the death penalty.
Therefore, We call upon Bahrain to comply with its international human rights obligations, and to allow entry to UN Special Rapporteurs. We also call upon the Council Members to hold Bahrain accountable for severe human rights violations.