Prominent Bahraini activist reveals Bahraini officers tortured activist

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Al-Akhbar Management

Published Monday, December 22, 2014

President of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights Nabeel Rajab revealed Monday gruesome details of the torture endured by an activist in Thailand, where three Bahraini officers forced him on a plane back to the kingdom, online publication Bahrain Mirror reported.

Rajab wrote on his Twitter account early on Monday that three Bahraini officers were sent to Thailand to forcibly bring Ali Haroun, 20, back to Bahrain.

The three officers severely beat Haroun, who was handcuffed and blindfolded, kicking him in the face and body as they dragged him up the airplane’s stairs.

Haroun, while still bleeding from the face, continued to resist boarding, driving the officers to sedate him and force him into the plane.

The beating occurred in the presence of Thai police, which documented the incident but did not interfere.

Back in Bahrain, eyewitnesses reported that Haroun walked out from the plane on foot but looked very tired.

Initial reports said that he was taken to the hospital in intensive care, which, according to Rajab, meant he was tortured once again upon his arrival to Bahrain.

Haroun was then transferred out of the hospital when news of his torture spread to his family, who said he might lose his eyesight due to the damage the officers caused to his eye.

Rajab held the Bahraini authorities, Gulf Air, and Thai police responsible, vowing to pursue the incident which clearly violates basic human rights.

Other Bahrainis, including prominent activist Maryam al-Khawaja, joined Rajab and took to Twitter to expose Bahraini authorities’ human rights violation.

Khawaja also reported that Bahraini authorities raided the area of Bani Jamra at 3:00 am, breaking into several houses, including Haroun’s.

Bahrain, home to the US Navy's Fifth Fleet, remains deeply divided three years after the government repressed month-long pro-reform demonstrations.

Saudi Arabia and other Gulf neighbors sent troops into Bahrain in March 2011, reinforcing a crackdown that led to accusations of serious human rights violations.

Protests still frequently break out in Bahraini villages, sometimes leading to clashes with police.

Political activists, namely Rajab, Khawaja and her sister Zainab al-Khawaja, have been prosecuted by Bahraini authorities for attempting to voice out and expose gross human rights violations by the Bahraini authorities and Khalifa ruling family, which has been in power for over 200 years.

At least 89 people are estimated to have been killed and hundreds have been arrested and tried since the uprising erupted.

Bahrain has the distinction of being the country with the second highest prison population rate per 100,000 amongst Arab states in the West Asian and North African region.

Over 200 minors are being held within these prisons, forced to stay side-by-side with adults, and some have faced torture and sexual abuses.

Authorities ignored pleas by human rights groups to release political prisoners, instead increasing the punishment for violent crimes.



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