On 31 January 2015, the Alkhalifa ministry of the interior revoked the citizenship of 72 individuals, including journalists, doctors, political and a human rights activists, rendering most of them stateless. Americans for Democracy and Human Rights in Bahrain (ADHRB), the Bahrain Center for Human Rights (BCHR) and the Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy (BIRD) condemn the continued use of citizenship revocation by the Government of Bahrain as a reprisal against human rights activists and pro-democracy campaigners. More than 120 natives have been stripped of their nationality.
The Bahrain Centre for Human Rights issued a statement about the revocation of nationalities of native Bahrainis detailing the case and calling on the regime to: restore citizenship to all citizens who were unfairly stripped of their citizenship without recourse to due process of law, halt the policy of citizenship revocation used as a punishment against critics and dissidents practicing their right to freedom of opinion and expression and join and adhere to the 1954 UN Convention relating to the Status of Stateless Persons and the 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness
In Brussels 100 Members of the European Parliament, more than 10% of the total number of the European chamber, support the call for the charges against Nabeel Rajab to be dropped. This is despite the regime’s continued policy of spin and deception in Brussels. Last week it sent a large delegation of cronies to present false images of the dynastical rule to the Europeans. Millions of dollars of people’s money are spent on these programmes. Yet there are many who have deep insight and strong human feelings and would not be influenced by policies of deception and whitewashing.
The phenomenon of the “disappeared” has escalated in recent months. Human Rights activists are now convinced that Alkhalifa regime is attempting to circumvent the calls to stop torture by administering it at secret houses and farms. Victims are taken there, blindfolded and disoriented, tortured and abused before they are taken to the official prisons. Many remain in those torture houses for periods of up to two weeks during which their families are denied news or access to them. For more than ten days three people were snatched by regime’s Death Squads with no news of their whereabout: Adel Faisal, Ahmad Al Maqabi and Ahmad Abdul Wassi. Adel Faisal is now at Al Houra torture centre. Detainee Aqeel Hassan Jassim, 30, from Al Ekr is suffering from several serious illnesses due to the torture, but has been denied proper medical care. His family has been calling for his transfer to hospital but their calls have not been heeded.
Meanwhile, the regime’s kangaroo courts have been issuing harsh verdicts against native Bahrainis: Hussain Jaffar Bu Hamad, from Bani Jamra, has been ordered to be detained for 30 days more after spending over five months behind bars. On 1st February Alkhalifa clan detained the grandsons of Martyr Sayed Ahmad Al Ghuraifi, assassinated by Henderson’s security forces in 1985; They are; Sayed Ahmad Al Ghuraifi, Sayed Mohammad Al Alawi and his brother Sayed Ahmad. Yesterday three native Bahraini youths from Sadad Town were arrested; Ali Abdulla Fadhel, Hassan Yousuf Ali and Ahmad Al Qurmuzi were detained for taking part in anti-regime peaceful protest. The illegal detention of Yousuf Fadhel Al Saffar was renewed by regime’s court for ten more days for tweeting people’s demands.
In one of the most bizarre episodes the Alkhalifa regime stopped the broadcasting of a new satellite Arabic channel within hours of its launching. Al Arab is owned by the Saudi billionaire, Walid bin Talal, who chose Bahrain for his channel to support the fledgling regime. He spent lavishly to ensure that the new channel would compete with more established channels like Al Jazeera, BBC and Al Arabiya. But it appears that the new Saudi king and his entourage have been settling political scores with their clan members and would not endorse the Al Arab channel. It was a flagrant step by Bahrain’s dictator who often slapped those who helped him at time of crisis. Among the programmes in the first hours of launching was an interview with one of Al Wefaq’s senior figures; Khalil Al Marzooq.
Bahrain Freedom Movement
4th February 2015