Bahrain top court approves the death sentences against two activists
DUBAI (UAE) – Bahrain’s highest court approved the death sentences against two activists for bombing a convoy and killing a police officer, after convictions. Human rights groups say it was based on confessions extracted through torture.
Mohammed Ramadhan and Husain Moosa lost their final appeal on Monday against death sentences, first handed down by a criminal court in December 2014.
Security forces had arrested Moosa, a hotel employee, and Ramadhan, a security guard in Bahrain’s international airport, in early 2014 following the death of a policeman in a bombing in al-Deir, a village northeast of Manama. Ten other people tried with them have also been put behind bars.
Both men were tortured so as to make them submit to false confessions, subjected to sexual assault, beatings, sleep deprivation and other abuses, according to Amnesty International and a UK-based pro-opposition activist group, the Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy (BIRD).
Ramadhan’s wife, Zainab Ebrahim, tweeted after the sentence, said, “The terror of knowing that my husband can be executed by firing squad at any moment without proper notice is tearing me apart,”.
Haroon Al Zayani, head of the public prosecutor’s technical bureau, in a statement sent, said, “Each of the defendants had an attorney present with him throughout all the stages of the trial,”
He said, the chronology of medical reports showed confessions were obtained “in full consciousness and voluntarily, without any physical or verbal coercion,”.
Bahrain, though led by a Sunni Muslim royal family has a majority of Shi’ite majority population, and has been facing dissent since 2011 when it silenced protests with Saudi help.
The Gulf island kingdom, Home to the Middle East headquarters of the US Navy, has cancelled the citizenship of hundreds of people in mass trials. Most opposition figures and human rights activists have either been jailed or have fled.
(Photos syndicated via Reuters)
This story has been edited by BH staff and is published from a syndicated field.