HRW: Bahrain: Suspend Death Penalty

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The Bahrain Court of Cassation, the country’s court of last resort, upheld the death sentence against two men on May 6, 2019, Human Rights Watch said today. A court convicted the men, Ali al-Arab and Ahmad al-Malali, of terror offenses in a mass trial on January 31, 2018. Bahrain ended a de facto seven-year moratorium on the death …

Reuters: U.N. says UAE activist Mansoor’s prison conditions “may constitute torture”

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Prominent United Arab Emirates (UAE) pro-democracy campaigner Ahmed Mansoor may be suffering treatment amounting to torture, including prolonged solitary confinement, U.N. human rights experts said on Tuesday. UAE citizen Mansoor was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment in 2018 for criticizing the government on social media. Independent U.N. rights experts said they were “gravely concerned” for …

HRW: Saudi Arabia: Second Case Against Jailed Shia Cleric

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 Saudi authorities are seeking to lengthen the prison sentence of a cleric known for supporting protests against the systematic discrimination of Saudi Arabia’s Shia minority, Human Rights Watch said today. The cleric, Sheikh Mohammad bin Hassan al-Habib, is serving a seven-year prison sentence for allegedly violating a pledge made to prosecutors, but he faces a second …

UN human rights chief deeply concerned by mass terrorism convictions in Bahrain

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UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet on Thursday expressed alarm at a court decision in Bahrain that revoked the nationalities of 138 people after a mass trial. There are serious concerns that the court proceedings failed to comply with international fair trial standards, with a large number of the accused reportedly tried in absentia. …

Amnesty: Bahrain: Mass trial revoking citizenship of 138 people ‘a mockery of justice’

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Responding to the news that a court in Bahrain has today convicted 139 people of terrorism charges after an unfair mass trial, and revoked the citizenship of all but one, Amnesty International’s Middle East Research Director, Lynn Maalouf said: “With these outrageous sentences, Bahrain’s authorities have once again demonstrated their complete disregard for international fair trial standards. …

Amnesty: UAE: Ahmed Mansoor enters fourth week of hunger strike to protest unfair 10-year sentence

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Responding to confirmed reports that prominent Emirati human rights defender, Ahmed Mansoor, has been on hunger strike for more than three weeks to protest his prison conditions and the unfair trial he was subjected to before being sentenced, Amnesty International’s Middle East Research Director, Lynn Maalouf said: “It is clearly not enough for the UAE …

HRW: UN: A Call to Free Saudi Women Activists

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A joint statement by 36 countries on March 7, 2019 calling on Saudi Arabia to improve its human rights record was a landmark step toward justice and accountability, Human Rights Watch said today. The statement, delivered by Iceland at the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, condemns the murder of the Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, urges …

HRW: Saudi Arabia: Women’s Rights Activists Charged

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Saudi Arabia’s public prosecution agency announced on March 1, 2019 that the country’s leading women’s rights activists who have been detained following arrests that began in May 2018 would face charges and be put on trial, Human Rights Watch said today. The prosecutors did not specify the charges. Human rights organizations began reporting in November that Saudi interrogators …

Amnesty: HUMAN RIGHTS IN THE MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA: REVIEW OF 2018

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Suppression of freedom of expression on political issues remained widespread, with many high-profile dissidents imprisoned on speech-related charges. Public protests remained officially banned in the capital. The government further curbed the right to freedom of association by making legislative amendments that had a de facto discriminatory impact on Shi’a groups. The authorities continued to impose …