Bahrain: People disappointed by UK’s unyielding support to Alkahlifa torturers
By signing a defence treaty with the Alkhalifa ruling family, UK has turned its back on the most basic moral issues, a leading opposition figure has said. To defend a hereditary dictatorship condemned for the use of systematic torture, destroying more than forty religious places, imprisoning doctors and other medical staff and granting immunity from prosecution to torturers especially Nasser, the son of Bahrain’s dictator is a total abandonment of the least expected standards of human rights and human decency. Instead of rebuking the Alkhlaifa rulers for their crimes the UK Government has accepted to become a partner with them at a time or rising popular revolution that will not give up its struggle to achieve a fundamental political change and end the black era of this feudal immoral regime. The Bahraini opposition will continue its lobbying of the political establishment to end this deal which has proven the double standards in UK’s foreign policy.
The meeting between UK’s Foreign Secretary and the Alkhalifa crown prince has been viewed as yet another form of political support aiming at the rehabilitation of the Alkhalifa killers and torturers within the international community. William Hague has failed to condemn the regime for arresting the medics, human rights activists, the children or the political leaders. He has failed to call for the prosecution of the senior torturers like Nasser bin Hamad Alkhalifa or the military leader who had given orders to kill protesters and destroy people’s property and act mercilessly against Bahraini natives. It was one of the most disappointing public policies by the UK Government.
In Washington a group of two Senators and 22 Representatives issued a letter calling for Bahrain’s dictator to release eight medics currently in custody in order “to adhere to international norms of medical neutrality.” The group suggests that the medical professionals were targeted due to the fact that they witnessed the brutality leveled against citizens of Bahrain, and it reiterated calls for the government to "adhere to its promises to implement recommendations from the . The signees include Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR), Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ), Rep. James McGovern (D-MA), and Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), among others. The Washington-based Human Rights Watch has also called for the release of the medics immediately and conditionally.
The world-renowned human rights activist, Nabil Rajab, has ended a three-day hunger strike in protest against the ill-treatment he had received at the hands of the Alkhalifa torturers who ill-treated him after allowing him briefly to attend his mother’s funeral. The International Federation for Human Rights (Fidh) has joined other human rights bodies in calling for Mr Rajab’s immediate and unconditional release.
Meanwhile the ruling tribe has intensified its repression against the Bahraini people. Its interior minister has urged citizens to spy on people and report them to the torturers in exchange for money. He also asked foreign expatriates to do their share of spying and take active role against the people, otherwise they may be expelled from the country. This intensification of repression followed a new threat by the Alkhalifa justice minister to silence dissenting voices coming from the last remaining bastions of public expression. Prayers leaders who defend people’s rights or attack human rights violations will be targeted with arrest and persecution. In addition to the leaders of leaders who are languishing behind bars for twenty months, the Alkhalifa are now targeting senior community figures like Sheikh Isa Qassim, who has been cautiously outspoken against dictatorship, persecution and human rights abuses.
Meanwhile the people have continued their revolution with daily protests, both during the day and at night. At least thirty protests are taking place daily with active participation from women who have become pivotal to the revolution. In the past few days, scores of Bahrainis have been injured by police guns who have used shotguns, chemical and tear gases routinely. More people have been arrested and tortured. The Alkhalifa have also intensified the use of judiciary as a weapon against the people. The people are adamant on achieving their goal of fundamental political change despite the intensive repression.
Bahrain Freedom Movement
12 October 2012
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