Thousands of native Bahrainis have prayed for Lebanon following the devastating Beirut explosion that killed more than 100, injured thousands and caused massive destruction around the port. As investigations began relief agencies started a massive campaign to help the country reel from this most devastating disaster. Our people stand in solidarity with the Lebanese people and urge everyone to offer utmost help to alleviate the suffering.
The Saudi-khalifi omen has befallen Juan Carlos, the former king of Spain. Yesterday he fled his country to an unknown destination, after his situation had become untenable. Spain’s Supreme Court said it aimed to establish Juan Carlos’s connection with the Saudis and khalifis after his abdication in June 2014. At that point he lost his immunity from prosecution. In March this year prosecutors began investigating a bank account in the former Spanish king’s name which contained about 100 million euros, a gift from the Saudi royal house. The 1.7 million euros which are now known to have come from Bahrain’s dictator – also a gift to Juan Carlos, were delivered by the Spanish king to his Swiss bank in cash. It is clear that whoever befriends these dictators is doomed.
Reprieve, the international body against capital punishment has reacted to the spread of Covid-19 inside Bahrain’s prisons. It said: The first case of COVID19 has been reported in the Bahraini prison where Mohammad Ramadhan, Husain Moosa and Maher Abbas al-Khabbaz are locked up. The prison is overcrowded and access to vital care is limited. An outbreak could be devastating.” It added: “There’s overcrowding, especially in building 13 where there are 13 individuals per cell that is only meant for 8. All political prisoners must be released immediately – Bahrain has one of the highest Covid19 rates per capita in the region”
Four of the political prisoners who had been placed on quarantine few days ago have sent out a statement about their predicament. The four, Ali Mohammad Taher and Hussain Mohammad Najib (from Bloc 3 of Jau prison), and Fadel Abbas Mohammad Ali and Hassan Ali Mahdi Ramadan (Bloc 4) confirmed that they are now quarantined at Bloc 23. They said they had been moved on 30th July and various tests were carried out, but they have not been informed of the results. They also said that prison guards, torturers and police are keeping a distance from them and wearing face masks. Among those who had been quarantined are: Mohammad Jaffar Al Ghasra, Sadeq Abdul Amir Rashed, Hassan Mohammad Al Zaaki, Isa Hassan Jassim, Ahmad Abdul Karim, Mohammad Ali Yaqoob, Sayed Ahmad Ali Nasser, Mohammad Abdul Hamid, Alaa Mansoor Mohammad, Maitham Hassan Abbas, Hassan Assad Jassim and Qassim Mohammad Isa.
After 12 prisoners had visited the prison clinic, they were brought back and placed with the others. Several hours later they were removed into isolation after one person at the clinic was proven to have contracted Covid19. None of the other prisoners who were in contact with the 12 was quarantined. There is now grave concerns about the potential spread of the virus in the overcrowded prison.
Meanwhile, the prisoners at Bloc 14 have threatened to go on hunger strike if the khalifi regime insisted on preventing them from exercising their religious rituals in Ashura. Another audio message from behind bars has confirmed the continued persecution of native political detainees. Yousuf Hussain said that he and others continue to be abused and beaten when they visit the clinic.
Denying the political prisoners the basic right of family contact has become a tool of revenge against natives. The mother of Mohammad Al Daqqaq has not heard from him for more than 40 days.
On 3rd August Khalifi security officers detained native Hussaini orator Sheikh Hamed Ashoor upon his arrival at the airport. Nothing is known of his whereabout. He had made a brief religious trip to the city of Qom in Iran. The arrest came as tension began to rise as the regime started to grind its axes to stop the native majority exercising their religious rituals linked to Imam Hussain’s martyrdom. The Ashura season will start on 20th August. Several other orators are being targeted and threatened with arrest and torture if they presented their own version of the early history of Islam which is fundamentally different from what the regime seeks to promote. No independent or free debate is permitted.
On 29th July the Bar Human Rights Committee of England and Wales (BHRC), in an open letter, called on the King of Bahrain to suspend or commute the death sentences of Mohamed Ramadan and Husain Ali Moosa. Mr Ramadan and Mr Moosa were convicted on the basis of false confessions signed under duress, of carrying out violent acts in 2014. “The convictions in this case are fundamentally flawed, the trial court failed to uphold basic due process safeguards such as access to lawyers and access to independent medical doctors and failed to hear independent medical evidence. The convictions are wholly inconsistent with Bahrain’s domestic law provisions and international obligations, and the allegations of torture are credible and deeply disturbing. In the face of such doubt, the King of Bahrain should act without delay to commute these sentences. Under the constitution the King has to ratify death sentences and he should prevent the killing of these two men.“
Bahrain Freedom Movement
5th August 2020 (email@example.com, www.vob.org)