Profile in Persecution: Hussain Ali Ayyad

Hussain Ali Ayyad was 19 years old, still a student from AlShakhoora, when officers from the Bahraini Ministry of Interior arrested him in 2017. He was tortured and sentenced in an unfair trial and is currently serving a lengthy sentence in Jau Prison.

On 27 February 2017, armed civilian officers and riot police raided Hussain’s house at 3 a.m. in a barbaric manner by breaking down the door of the house with no arrest warrant. They proceeded to intimidate his family, interrogating and threatening his little brother and father, who was taken to the living room at gunpoint. Hussain was arrested outside the house, and he called his family later on to inform them that he was arrested and tortured.

Prior to his arrest, Hussain was summoned by the Criminal Investigations Directorate (CID) by phone. He was interrogated for three hours, where he was threatened and pressured that he would not be released until he signed a confession stating that he received training on the use of weapons in Saudi Arabia by an officer from Bahrain Defense Force since the only country Hussain had traveled to was Saudi Arabia. Hussain ended up signing the confession to be released.

After his arrest, Hussain was disappeared, his whereabouts not disclosed to his family for two weeks. After a 25-day investigation period in Jau Prison where Hussain was tortured into confessing and wasn’t allowed to contact his family or meet with his lawyer, he was transferred to Dry Dock Detention Center. His family was not allowed to meet with him until twenty days after his transfer due to signs of torture that were evident on him.

Hussain was charged with manufacturing explosive devices and detonating them targeting a police patrol, as well as attempted murder. Consequently, he was sentenced to life imprisonment with the revocation of his nationality approximately a year after his arrest. After the appeal, the sentence was reduced to 15 years in prison, and his nationality was restored by order of the King.

As of 30 August 2022, Hussain’ communication with his family has been suspended. During his last call, it was apparent that he was being monitored because he could not speak freely. His family visit was also canceled for vague administrative reasons with no assurances of any future visits. Hussain has suffered from stomach pain and high fever due to inadequate food served at the prison.

Hussain’s warrantless arrest, torture, and unjust trial constitute a direct violation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Convention against torture, which Bahrain is signatory to. Thus, ADHRB demands that Hussain be immediately and unconditionally released and that his allegations of torture be impartially investigated to hold perpetrators accountable.