A recent photo of Mohammed Mushaima in the hospital with his newborn baby

2 October 2012

The Bahrain Center for Human Rights (BCHR)expresses its grave concern over the death of a prisoner of conscience due to lack of adequate health care while in detention over false charges and the arrest of six medics in house raids after their verdicts were upheld in Cassation Court.

A prisoner of conscience dies due to lack of adequate health care

Mohammed Mushaima, a 22 year old prisoner, died today at Salmaniya hospital just a few hours ago. He was arrested from the hospital last year when the military took over, and was sentenced by a military court to 7 years imprisonment despite his lawyers presenting documents proving that he was in the hospital at the time of his alleged crime (see copies of the documents below). He was accused with several made-up charges including "illegal gathering near the financial harbor". Mushaima suffers from severe sickle cell, and his lawyers had made several requests that he be release due to the severity of his condition. In secret phone calls, Mohammed told his lawyer that he was going to die if he was not released to receive the health care he needed for his condition. There are many prisoners of conscience in Bahrain that are in need for immediate medical treatment for being ill or seriously injured due to the regime’s use of excessive force. However, they are being denied medical care, including Mohammed Sahwan whose case was reported by the BCHR.

Medics arrested in hours raids after their verdicts were upheld

In the early hours of today, the six doctors whose verdicts were upheld yesterday were arrested through house raids. In 2011, 20 medics were arrested and detained after the violent crackdown on protesters in the pearl roundabout. They were subjected to torture and forced into false confessions; their crimes were treating injured protesters and taking to media about the violations committed by the government. In Sep 2011, they were found guilty in the Military Court and sentenced from five to 15 years’ imprisonment, to be later reduced to acquittal for some and sentences from one month to five years’ imprisonment, after the huge attention from media and the international community. Yesterday, 1 Oct 2012, the Cassation Court upheld the sentences against nine of the medics:

1. Ali Al Ekri – five years 2. Ebrahim Al Dumistani – three years 3. Ghassan Dhaif – one year 4. Saeed Samahiji – one year 5. Mahmood Asghar – six months 6. Dhua Ebrahim – two months 7. Bassim Dhaif – one month 8. Nader Dewani – one month 9. Abdulkhaleq Al Oraibi – one month

While three of the medics have completed their sentences, six had their houses raided and were arrested this morning, Ali Al Ekri, Ebrahim Al Dumistani, Ghassan Dhaif, Mahmood Asghar, Saeed Samahiji and Dhua Ebrhaim.

Last month, Seven policemen/ women were charged with torture by the public prosecution. On Monday 1 Oct 2012, a hearing on the trial of two police charged with torturing medics while detained was postponed by the High Criminal court to 18 Oct 2012, after both failed to appear in court. The remaining five police defendants are to be tried separately. Bahrain’s regime has proved to be fostering a culture of impunity; two policemen were acquitted from murder just a week ago.

The Bahrain Center for Human Rights would like to reiterate that the escalation happening in Bahrain appears to be a result of the emboldening of the Bahraini authorities due to lack of international consequences. We call the US, the UK, the EU and other governments that have influence on the Bahraini regime to:
1. Call for the immediate release of the six doctors 2. Launch an investigation into the death of Mohammed Mushaima and hold officials responsible for his death 3. Immediately stop all arms sales to the Government of Bahrain due to the continuous human rights violations 4. Hold the government of Bahrain accountable for the crimes its committing on a daily basis against its people

Kanoo Health Center's letter which confirms that Mohamed was lying in the center the day of the incident he is accused of participating in

A report from the Ministry of Health on the critical health condition of Mohamed

One of the lawyer's letters to request release of Mohamed based on his health conditions