On 28th September the Saudi-led alliance waging war on Yemen was dealt a strong blow when the Human Rights Council voted to renew the mandate of the Group of Eminent Experts (GEE), which has been investigating violations and abuses of international law committed in Yemen. The Saudis, Emiratis and others had lobbied hard against the renewal of the embarrassing investigation that had found the aggressors responsible for serious war crimes. Kevin Whelan, Amnesty International’s Senior Advocate said: “Today’s vote sends a clear signal to all perpetrators of crimes under international law in Yemen that impunity is not an option. All parties to the conflict – including the Saudi and UAE-led coalition, must fully cooperate with the UN investigation team and help facilitate their work”.
On Wednesday 26th September the Saudi security forces committed most heinous crime by assassinating three innocent civilians in the Eastern Province. The three were at a house which was attacked by heavily armed forces without prior warning, killing its occupants in cold blood. The victims are Saudis and were named as: Mohammad Hassan Al Zayed, Mufid Hamza Al Alwan and Khalil Ibrahim Al Muslim. In the past three years many Shia Muslim civilians were killed by the Saudi forces which attacked their towns. After each killing, the regime’s mouthpieces claimed the victims had been on the “wanted list”.
Alarms have been raised for the well-being of a prominent Saudi dissident who disappeared in Istanbul yesterday. Jamal Khashoghji, a columnist and contributor to international news media like The New York Times was probably abducted inside the Saudi Consulate in the city. If his abduction is confirmed Mr Khashoghji will be yet another dissident kidnapped by the Saudis in other lands. Few days after criticising the Saudi regime for its planned partial privatisation of ARAMCO, a Saudi citizen was detained. The Saudi press reported that Essam Al Zamel had been charged with “treason and collaboration with diplomats and other foreigners against the country”. Sheikh Mamdooh Al Harbi has also been arrested for posting a video clip questioning extremism and terrorism, their roots and sources of grooming and finance.
At a Press Conference yesterday, Bahraini activist, Ali Mushaima announced that he was ending his protest outside the Bahraini Embassy in London that he had started more than two months ago. Last month he ended his hunger strike after the regime provided some medical care to his ailing father, Hassan Mushaima that he had been denied for 15 months. The announcement came as a relief to many of his supporters and admirers. His health had started to deteriorate after losing 16 kilograms of his weight and showing signs of irreversible fatigue. He told the Press Conference that he had succeeded in transferring the struggle to the UK’s Parliament and that 15 MPs and Peers would take up the case with the British Government which is the main defender of the Alkhalifa hereditary dictatorship.
On 28th September Amnesty International (AI) issued a report titled: “Bahrain: Medical negligence leaves prisoners in agony, puts lives at risk”. It said that a new investigation by its staff had revealed a shocking pattern of medical negligence in Bahrain’s prison system, where individuals with serious conditions like cancer, multiple sclerosis and sickle-cell anaemia are being denied specialist care and pain medication. It added: “The reports we heard from prisoners’ relatives paint a stark picture of medical negligence and intentional ill-treatment in Bahrain’s prisons. In one appalling case, a man with stage-three cancer was sent back to prison just days after a biopsy – the same individual recently had to wait for more than a month for his medication. Another man has lost at least seven teeth since being detained, due to denial of dental treatment.” AI made a frantic call to the regime: “We are urging Bahrain’s authorities to take immediate steps to ensure all those in state custody can access adequate health care, as they are obliged to do under international law.” said Devin Kenney. Amnesty International also called on the authorities at Jaw prison, the women’s jail and prison at Isa Town, and all other places of detention in Bahrain “to abide by international human rights law and standards in their treatment of detainees and prisoners. They must ensure that detainees and prisoners enjoy the standards of health care that is available in the community, without discrimination.”
Woman prisoner of conscience, Fawziya MashaAllah has been sentenced to one year in jail for her political views. She has been suffering various ailments but given superficial medical treatment. Last week regime’s forces arrested 15 people falsely accusing them of attempting to “cause chaos” during Ashura religious commemorations that ended on 20th September. The facts were distorted by the torturers who described in a statement late Tuesday 25th September the detainees as “15 vandals indulging in abusive activities to cause chaos over the 10 days of Ashura with funding from Iran”. Police released the names and photographs of the 15 young detainees. The political war against native majority Shia Muslim population has intensified.
Bahrain Freedom Movement
3rd October 2018 (firstname.lastname@example.org, www.vob.org)