Arbitrary Decrees Against Prisoners Of Conscience In UAE, Bahrain, Egypt


GENEVA- Geneva Council for Human Rights and Justice (GCHRJ) has condemned the arbitrary decrees issued in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the Kingdom of Bahrain and the Republic of Egypt against freedom of opinion and rights activists.

Geneva-based international human rights organization stated in a press release that the decrees issued in those countries were used in retaliation and in the absence of a fair trial to suppress dissent and public freedoms.

The Human Rights Council pointed out that an Emirati appeals court upheld a 10-year prison term for prominent human rights activist Ahmed Mansour on charges of criticizing the government in social media.

Mansur, an electrical engineer and human rights activist known in the UAE in March 2017, was arrested and sentenced in May 2018 to widespread charges of criticizing the authorities

Mansour was awarded the ” Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders” in 2015. He has documented the human rights situation in the UAE since 2006 and has

Until his arrest on March 20, 2017, Mansour was the last remaining human rights defender in the UAE. He was tried and convicted on charges of “insulting the UAE and its leaders” including its leaders, “spreading false information to harm the reputation of the UAE abroad” and “portraying the UAE as a land without law” and sentenced to 10 years in prison on May 29, 2018.

GCHRJ added that the Bahraini Supreme Court supported the imprisonment of human rights activist Nabeel Rajab for five years in a case of anti-war slogans against Yemen and criticizing judicial proceedings.

The verdict of the Supreme Court is final and cannot be appealed.  Rajab is sentenced for two years in another case in which he has been accused of “spreading rumors and misleading” during televised interviews in which he criticized his country’s authorities.

An initial verdict in the case of Twitter was issued in February and was upheld by the Court of Appeal in June, before it became final on Monday with the ruling of the Supreme Court. In 2015, Mansour published tweets talking about torture in a Bahraini prison and criticized the Saudi-led coalition’s operations against the rebels in Yemen.

In the context of this case, he was also charged with “insulting the countries institution and harming Saudi Arabia through communication sites.”

Rajab has been one of the most demanding reformers since the start of the events eight years ago. He is the head of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights and the Gulf Center for Human Rights. He was the Assistant Secretary General of the International Federation for Human Rights.

GCHRJ also criticized the Egyptian Court of Appeal for imprisoning the Egyptian activist Amal Fathi for two years because of publishing a video that accused the authorities of failing to protect women from sexual harassment, days after her release in another case.

Amal was detained in May after publishing a 12-minute video showing her anger at poor service at a bank, traffic jam, sexual harassment by a taxi driver and deteriorating living conditions.

Amal was accused of publishing false news, undermining national security and publishing an inappropriate video. She was sentenced to two years’ imprisonment with a fine of 10,000 pounds ($ 557) in September, although the sentence was not enforced until the appeal was heard.

Amal, the mother of a three-year-old boy belonging to the banned April 6 youth movement, played a role in the mass protests that forced former President Hosni Mubarak to step down in 2011.

Geneva Council for Human Rights and Justice confirmed that the sentences handed down against Ahmed Mansour Nabil Rajab and Amal Fathi are unjust and shameful and reflect the reality of repressive authorities that restrict public freedoms and use the judiciary as a means of retaliation to achieve this.

The council stressed that the mentioned provisions exposes the nature of the ruling regimes in the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt and its prosecution of activists, opposition politicians and human rights activists on wide charges, which calls for immediate international intervention to stop these violations.

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