Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Forced “confessions” and unfair trials: two Bahraini teachers sentenced to imprisonment

Mahdi 'Issa Mahdi Abu Dheeb and Jalila al-Salman. © Private
Jalila al-Salman and Mahdi 'Issa Mahdi Abu Dheeb are former leaders of the Bahrain Teachers’ Association.

On 21 October an appeal court upheld the guilty verdict against Mahdi and Jalila but reduced their prison sentences to five years and six months respectively.
They were arrested in 2011 after calling for a teachers strike in support of protesters’ calls for reform in Bahrain. Whilst in detention they were held in solitary confinement, where they say they were subjected to torture or other ill-treatment and forced to sign “confessions”.  
They were initially tried before a military court and convicted of, among other things, attempting to overthrow the ruling system by force and inciting hatred of the regime. Amnesty International believes neither or them used or advocated violence and is not aware that any such evidence was presented during their trials.

We need you to continue putting pressure on the Bahraini authorities to immediately and unconditionally release Mahdi, as a prisoner of conscience, and ensure that Jalila does not serve any of her remaining sentence. In the face of injustice and repression they need your support now.

Sign the petition below:
Your Excellency,
We the undersigned call on you to ensure that the convictions and sentences of Jalila al-Salman and Mahdi 'Issa Mahdi Abu Dheeb’s are quashed, that Mahdi, as a prisoner of conscience, is immediately and unconditionally released and that Jalila is not returned to prison to serve the remainder of her sentence.
We respectfully urge you to investigate their allegations of torture and other ill-treatment in custody, make the results public and hold anyone responsible to account.

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