Bahrain: US Citizen Detained for Over One Month Without a Trial
The Bahrain Center for Human Rights (BCHR) expresses its grave concern over the continued detention for more than a month without a trial of the US/Bahraini citizen Taqi Al-Maidan by Bahraini authorities. Al-Maidan has not yet been allowed access to legal representation is deprived from adequate medical care that he needs.
Taqi Al-Maidan is a 24-year-old Bahraini with US citizenship. On the 7 October 2012 at 2 am, Taqi’s home was raided by seven masked men in civilian clothing who broke the front door, terrifying the family and arresting Al-Maidan. He was taken without a warrant, his phone was confiscated and his mother was told to check with the local police station the next morning. Al-Maidan's family started a search for their son. They went to the Exhibition road police station at 4:30 am where they were told that they do not have him and they should check after 8:00 am. His mother explained the circumstances of her son’s arrest and she was told that her son might be in the Central Intelligence Department (CID). At the CID they were told again that they do not have any track of him in their system and suggested that they go to Al Hoora police station. However, in Al Hoora police station, they were informed that they do not have Al-Maidan in their custody. His brother went back to the CID where the officer told him that he cannot confirm or deny having Al-Maidan but he will contact him within the next two days. They also reported his case to the US embassy in Bahrain that noted the information and asked the family to call their emergency hotline for any updates.
According to his family, Al-Maidan called the next morning asking for clothes and informing them that he is being held in the Dry Dock prison. He told his mother that he was forced into confessing that he participated in burning a police water tank vehicle, even though he was home at the time of the incident. Al-Maidan told his family that he was put under pressure, tortured, threatened to be raped and have his mother raped if he did not “confess”. Taqi was interrogated without the presence of a lawyer. His lawyer has recently got consent from the government to allow her to get power of attorney from Tagi, but she is still unable to get permission to visit him or even see him to make the appointment official. His family and lawyer are very concerned over the well-being of Taqi Al-Maidan as he is suffering from ulcer in the stomach and colon, and is not receiving adequate medical care in custody. Al-Maidan should be on a special diet which is not provided in prison.
The BCHR urges the United States to interfere and put pressure on Bahraini authorities to immediately:
1. Allow proper legal representation for Taqi Al-Maidan
2. Give his lawyer access to his case file to follow the due process
3. Investigate the torture claims and ill-treatment
4. Ensure providing Al-Maidan proper medical care