Bahrain; testimonies of victims in The Kingdom of Torture

IMG_0849Lord Avebury

Details of government torture and killings.

Five people died in custody under torture

Frequent reports of torture and extra judicial killing

HRC started action against Bahrain. Under Swiss statement was signed by 47 states. Concerned of insufficient accountability.

Gov institutions must show their independence

In country where accusing king means long jail sentence

Witnesses can testify to what is happening to prisoners

We must remember Bahrain 13 who spoke at this room.

 

Mohammad Al Tajir

Torture has stories and testimonies by Bahrainis.

Dark rooms, falaqa, electrocution. I was subjected to torture for two months inside a room without air conditioning. There is no hesitation to say that Bahrain’s history in torture to obtain confession. We wonder why Bahrain’s authorities use torture. Since all means of public jobs go to one sect, judges,

Bahrain never depends on recruiting employees based on loyalties.

Bahrain has signed CAT. It has advanced legislative system, but implementation is absent. They are to protect regime. The regime has main strategy; to continue by any means; torture.

In my memory are my friends Hassan Mushaima and Abdul Jalil Al Singace who were tortured. Torture is revenge against

 

Nabeel Rajab

Thanks to Lord Avebury who has worked good job for our people.

Thank you for giving me chance to speak today which is UN Day

Immunity is widespread.

IMG_0820When I was at court there was a man who shot a protester. We saw pieces of his body.

At court I was hand-cuffed while the killer was free; he was driving his own car.

Our sentence for HR was two years. He was sentenced to two months.

This shows how the system is corrupt.

People like Hassan Mushaiam and Khawaja are serving life for calling for Republic.

I saw six policemen torturing six men. They tried to prevent me from speaking to anyone about it. The torturers are still working in their jobs. This encourages others to continue torture.

With your help we can defeat mentality of torture. We are disappointed with British Government’s attitude towards our struggle. UK Gov chose to side with dictators not with us.

We are trying to ge a resolution by HRC, UK Gov has veto on this. With HR activists like you we have

 

Dr TAha Al Durazi

The medics went through severe experience because of their treatment of the injured. Protesters were left at home for lack of treatment. We can consider those victims as victims of torture. They need to be managed at hospital not at home or at the streets. The official circular says that the hospitals are not allowed to received injured protesters, they have to report them to the authorities. Injured protesters are afraid of going to hospitals. This is main problem we are facing as medics. We are not allowed to manage the wounded. Shat we leave them to die or infections? Or shall we let them lose their eyes or kidneys?

 

Abul Nabi Al Ekri

I was worried about your health.

I want to give overall picture

Today in Al Wasat news there were testimonies by torture victims but without their names for fear of reprisal.

It is doctrine of state of Bahrain. Torture goes back to the British era. Since Blegrave and Henderson the cadres of security was led by British. We had Ian Henderson who worked from 1966 to 2000. He was honoured by king. Colonel Higgins and Shore.

Their allies are Jordanians; colonel Ghazi Jarrar and Hijazi.

Locals include Adel Flaifel, Abdulla Al Ma’wada and Khalid Al Wazzan and Rashid Al KHalifa.

Thesre torturers are now political leaders. He is presented as patriot.

General Bill commanded security forces. Independence went against will of ruling family. The intelligence and security continued for decades. There is little Bahranisation of the security system.

Cases of torture were there before and after independence.

In the so called Reform Era, there was relative freedom. Bahrain was under world’s eyes, bound by trade agreements. The regime was more sophisticated but as brutal as before.

They formed National Security Agency headed by Abdul Aziz Atityyatul Allah, then Khalifa bin Abdulla Al-Khalifa then Mohammad Al FAdhel. Pakistanis and Jordanians are always part of the security system.

Doctrine of state of Bahrain is the suspect is guilty, opposition is enemy of country. Opposition is agent of enemy of the country; ti could be Eygpt of Nasser, Soviet or Iran.

Forth doctrine; spare no method to get confessions.

Use disgracing methods such as rape. Rayhana Al Mousawi

Terrorise the victims to frighten them.

There was a truce during Iraq war. Then they unleashed their savage treatment.

Resumption of torture was in 2006 when they realized that the identity of state has been uncovered as authoritarian rule. On 17th December 2006 one youth was killed.

The 14th Feb Revolution changed the situation. There was attack on 16th Feb then 16th March. Then there was total onslaught on people.

There are memoirs of prisoners. These were revealed in courts and satellites but nothing has been taken against offenders.

From 1971 until now no torturer has been tried. They were promoted

Justice will prevail at the end. T

 

Kevin Laue, Redress

Today is important for Redress; 26th June the Day in support of victims of torture. In 1988 it was brought into force. We worked on Bahraini issues for past 15 years. The notorious now deceased Ian Henderson. WE tried to bring him to justice. He used to visit this country as UK national. Justice was not possible and he died without trial.

Impunity lies at heart of torture issue in Bahrain before 2011. I don’t need to add to what has happened. Bahrainis have been brave in exposing their ordeals.

Redress thinks the most useful thing it can do is to point out to HM government that its policy is double standards with regards to Bahrain. This years FCO’s HR report. Page 55 has section on Bahrain titled Progress in Bahrain; one hand it is critical of what is happening. On the other hand it talks of reform. We think it is misguided. Foreign Affairs Committee asked for submissions. When you look at what NGOs are saying, then it is not true that there has been substantial progress at all. What we will suggest is that UK Government must take principled stands towards Bahrain situation.

We try to help activists on ground and sign CAT. It is good but when it comes to countries like Bahrain we have have double standards. When FCO draws this report, we would like to know how they do that. They have their diplomats and NGOs, but how much do they engage with local human rights activist. IF FCO is sincere and took into account of what today’s speeches say, they would not come out with this kind of analysis. What is required is more principled and stronger critique of Bahrain Gov

 

Nazeeha Saeed

Today is not a good day to talk about torture.

Our coverage of the uprsinign in Bahrain was going on neutrally and independently. I went to Police Station on 22nd May 2011. I was beaten, electrocuted, kicked during my 13 hours of my detention. I did not know where I was. Because you protest, you write, you speak then you are exposed to this. That left me broken afterwards. It is only the support from the channel that I WORKED WITH THAT BROUGHT ME BACK. I AM NOT IN FAVOUR OF Gov or opposition.

This kind of treatment has not stopped. Now journalists and photographers have been detained for doing their jobs like Ahmad Humaidan, Sayed Mosawi,

What do you think UK can do?

There is a policy here. There is system of impunity. Instead of praising the so called reforms, that does not help

 

Al Tajir

Is Bahrain willing to stop torture?

No. Arbitrary detention continues, the presence of lawyers from attending interrogation continues, the use of torture continues. Denial of courts from stopping torture continues.

The whole system which protects these people continues; their supporters

This means torture will never stop. The regime is responsible and judiciary system. It is supposed to supervise what happens inside jails and court rooms. The court has the right to intervene to stop torture.

 

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