Bahrain: Peaceful Protests Violently Disrupted by Police, 27 Arbitrary Arrests, Including BCHR Acting Vice-President Sayed Yousi
This comes just one day after Hamad bin Isa Al-Khalifa gave a speech stating that: “Bahrain is a country of Law and Freedom” yet repression continues
18 December 2012
The Bahrain Center for Human Rights expresses grave concern in regards to the security forces’ excessive use of force, arbitrary arrests of peaceful pro-democracy protestors and the continuous harassment of Human Rights activists.
The February 14th Coalition called for a mass protest in the capital of Bahrain, Manama on 17th December which has been marked by the people since 1994 as “Bahrain’s Martyrs Day” following the extra-judicial killing of two Bahrainis during the 90’s uprising. As a reaction, Bahrain authorities closed off most streets leading to Manama, not allowing Bahrainis to enter in an attempt to prevent a large number of participants in the protest. Despite the lock-down, protests started in Manama and were attacked by the security forces with excessive use of force and resulting in the arbitrary arrest of 27 peaceful protestors (3 women and 25 men). (List of names below)
Amongst those arrested is BCHR’s Acting Vice President and Head of Documentation Unit Sayed Yousif Al-Muhafdha who attended the protest to monitor and document the situation. The BCHR believes that the arrest of Al-Muhafdha is part of an ongoing systematic targeting, harassment and detention of human rights defenders in Bahrain, and in particular those associated with the BCHR. After the arrest and severe torture of co-founder Abdulhadi Al-Khawaja, the sentencing of the President Nabeel Rajab to 2 years on charges of illegal protesting now Said Yousif Al-Muhafdha is arrested again after being released last month. Said Yousif will be held until presented to public prosecution. He was charged with broadcasting false information through Twitter.
Despite Hamad Bin Isa AlKhalifa’s claims that Bahrain will always be the nation of tolerance and liberties in his speech on 16th December, (the day he celebrates his “sitting on the throne”), the use of excessive force and arrests continues against peaceful protests.
The Bahrain Center for Human Rights strongly condemns the continuous crackdown on civilians who choose to exercise their right to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly.
The BCHR also calls on the United States, the United Kingdom, the UN and all other allies and international institutions to put pressure of the Government of Bahrain to:
1. Stop its use of excessive force in response to the continued peaceful protests, and to consider a meaningful solution to resolve the persistent political issues of instability in the country.
2. Immediately release detained human rights defender Sayed Yousif AlMuhafdhah and drop all charges against him.
3. Immediately and unconditionally release all prisoners of conscience and activists including leading human rights defenders Abdulhadi Al-Khawaja and Nabeel Rajab, Zainab Al-Khawaja.
17th December 2012, Manama Protest detainees (Name-Village):
Women: 1. Khadija Al-Ghanami - Dair 2. Fatima Al-Ghanami – Dair 3. Mona Abduljalil – Sanabis Men:
1. Hassan Ali Abd-Ethnashari - Duraz 2. Mohammed Jawad Abdulkarim - Duraz 3. Yasser Abdulhussain Al-Haddad - Duraz 4. Ahmed Al-Omran - Al-Hoora 5. Yaser Al-Haddad – Al-Hoora 6. Adel Salem – Al-Hoora (released) 7. Jabir Al-Haddad – Al-Hoora (released) 8. Said Yousif Al-Muhafdha – Manama 9. Hussain Al-Kkhoor – Manama 10. Reyadh – Manama 11. Haj Majeed – Dimistan/Ras Ruman 12. Abu Jameel – Al-Qadam 13. Hassan Jaber – Dimistan 14. Hussain Abbas – Al-Musallah 15. Abdulzahra Mohammad – Aali 16. Elyas Hussain – Manama 17. Fayadh Mohammed Jaffar – Barbar 18. Hussain Ahmed – Barbar 19. Mohammed Redha Juma – Muhazza 20. Ali Redha Juma – Muhazza 21. Ali Abdulemam Fakhar – Daih 22. Sayd Haidar Ali Al-Ghuraifi – Nuaim 23. Yaser Al-Shuaikh 24. Khalid Sultan Al-Mutawa – 28 years –
YouTube Videos :
- Father of Mahmood Abu Takki giving a speech (in English at minute 1:05)