A Bahraini court has sentenced the prominent human rights defender Nabeel Rajab, Head of Bahrain Centre for Human Rights (BCHR), to two years imprisonment over television interviews in 2015 and 2016, which the authorities claim it would “undermine its image.”
Gulf Institute for Democracy and Human Rights (GIDHR) condemns the unfair sentence against the human rights defender Nabeel Rajab, and considers it a political verdict; primarily aims at retaliating against a prominent human rights defender who is well known for consistently monitoring the human rights violations, and exposing the actual face of the government of Bahraini.
GIDHR considers Rajab’s sentence to be an additional proof that the Bahraini authorities are not willing to accept any free opinion, and that the judiciary has been a tool utilised by the government, motivated by its will, and serves its agenda. GIDHR considers this verdict a crime against freedom of expression in Bahrain, particularly for trying Rajab on statements he made. GIDHR demands the immediate suspension of the verdict, and the release of human rights defender Nabeel Rajab.
GIDHR calls on the international community to act vigorously and immediately to enact international legislation to prevent the exposure of all human rights defenders, to put an end to the frequent and illegal campaigns by the authorities against human rights activists, and to urge the allies of Bahrain to pressure the regime to respect human rights and stop all types of persecution.
Gulf Institute for Democracy and Human Rights