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Torture investigator orders new Bahrain death penalty hearing

Acting on recommendations from UK-trained torture investigators, Bahrain’s Attorney General has requested that the country’s highest court reconsider the death sentences handed to two men convicted on the basis of forced confessions obtained through torture.

Mohamed Ramadhan and Husain Moosa were sentenced in December 2014 for supposed involvement in a bombing that killed a police officer in Bahrain. Bahrain’s Special Investigations Unit (SIU), a UK-trained body set up to investigate allegations of misconduct and torture, recommended the case was referred to the Court of Cassationafter new medical evidence emerged.

The Attorney General of Bahrain, Dr Ali bin Fadhl Al-Buainain, said in a statement posted on social media on Wednesday that the cases were being referred “in accordance with the requirements of justice.”

This comes at a time when there are other facing imminent execution, Including Maher Abbas who has had his death sentence confirmed despite Bahrain’s highest court accepting that he was convicted on the basis of a confession obtained through torture.

Maya Foa, director of Reprieve (pictured), said: “This belated recognition that Mohamed and Husain’s trial was unfair is welcome but it comes after they have already suffered torture, including being stripped naked, beaten with iron rods and having their families threatened with rape.

“Bahrain must now go further and allow the Special Investigation Unit to review all death penalty cases where there were allegations of torture. This must include the case of Maher Abbas, who is facing imminent execution despite concerns expressed by Bahrain’s highest court that he was coerced into confessing.”

 

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