Bahrain absolute monarchy bans secularist opposition

This Turkish TV video in English says about itself:

The Newsmakers: Banning Bahraini opposition?

16 March 2017

Bahrain‘s justice ministry has taken steps to dissolve the main opposition party, Wa’ad, or the National Democratic Action Society. Bahrain says the group supports terrorism. But Wa’ad members say it’s yet another move to stamp out dissent and undermine their political work. So what’s driving the turmoil in the tiny island state?

From daily News Line in Britain, 3 June 2017:

Bahrain’s dissolution of a major political opposition society is the latest troubling move in its blatant campaign to end all criticism of the government, Amnesty International said on Wednesday.

Amnesty said: ‘The secular National Democratic Action Society (Wa’ad) was dissolved today after having issued a statement in February, saying that Bahrain was suffering from a “constitutional political crisis” amid continuous human rights violations. The group was subsequently charged with “advocating violence, supporting terrorism and incitement to encourage crimes and lawlessness”.’

‘By banning major political opposition groups, Bahrain is now heading towards total suppression of human rights,’ said Lynn Maalouf, Director of Research at Amnesty International’s Beirut Regional Office. ‘The suspension of Wa’ad is a flagrant attack on freedom of expression and association, and further proof that the authorities have no intention of delivering on promises of human rights progress.’

Amnesty added: ‘At the request of the Ministry of Justice, a Bahraini court dissolved Wa’ad following a statement it made on 14 February 2017, the anniversary of the country’s 2011 uprising, criticising the Bahraini constitution. The court also ruled to liquidate its funds.

‘On 6 March, the Ministry of Justice filed a lawsuit against Wa’ad for violating the Law on Political Associations. Wa’ad first learned about the lawsuit through the media, receiving official notification on 7 March. Wa’ad is also being charged on account of its support to the main opposition party Al Wefaq, which was dissolved on baseless charges in July 2016, and its Secretary General, Sheikh Ali Salman, an Amnesty International prisoner of conscience.

‘It also is accused of electing Ebrahim Sharif, a former prisoner of conscience, as a member of its Central Committee despite his having “lost his civil and political rights” when he was charged in 2011. The Ministry of Justice accused Wa’ad of “advocating and inciting terrorism” after it condemned the execution of three men on 15 January – referring to them as “martyrs” – and calling “martyrs” other men who died or were killed by security forces in February.’

‘The allegations made by the Ministry of Justice against Wa’ad and its leaders are baseless and absurd,’ said Lynn Maalouf. ‘Their only so-called “crime” is exercising their right to freedom of expression and association.’

Wa’ad and its leaders have repeatedly stated their opposition to violence and commitment to peaceful means and they have denied the charges. The Wa’ad party also signed the National Declaration of Non-Violence Principles in 2012 and has repeatedly condemned calls for violence and acts of violence against security forces.


Bahrain regime kills five demonstrators

This video is called President Trump Participates in a Bilateral Meeting with the King of Bahrain 5/21/2017.

From The News in Pakistan:

Five killed during Bahrain police raid on protest

DUBAI: Five people were killed in Bahrain on Tuesday after police opened fire on a protest by supporters of a top cleric in a Shiite village, the interior ministry said, in the latest unrest to hit the Sunni-ruled Gulf state. …

Witnesses had earlier told AFP that several civilians were wounded when police officers fired at demonstrators …

“A total of 286 arrests were made, including fugitives that had escaped from Jau Prison,” the ministry said. …

The kingdom has been rocked by unrest since 2011, when local authorities backed by a Saudi military force crushed Shiite-led protests demanding a constitutional monarchy and an elected prime minister.

Earlier Tuesday, the Britain-based Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy (BIRD) had announced one death as the police moved to disperse the long-running protest.

Amnesty International identified that protester as Mohamed Zayn al-Deen, 39, and said he had died of birdshot wounds to the head.

The police operation came just days after President Donald Trump met with Bahrain´s King Hamad in Saudi Arabia at the weekend, where the US leader made a clear break from previous US policy.

Trump told the king on Sunday it was “a great honour to be with you” and said there “has been a little strain but there won´t be strain with this administration”. …

The [Bahraini] government´s clampdown on dissent has drawn harsh condemnation from international rights groups and governments.

Saudi Black Hawk down in Yemen, ‘friendly’ fire

This 15 March 2011 video says about itself:

Saudi Troops and Helicopters Massacre of Peaceful Bahraini Protesters.

Translated from Dutch NOS TV today:

In Yemen a Saudi military helicopter has been shot down. All twelve soldiers who were in the Black Hawk helicopter have been killed.

The accident occurred in Marib province, east of the Yemeni capital Sanaa. According to the Ministry of Defense in Yemen [that is, the Saudi puppet government in exile of Yemen] website the helicopter was shot down by friendly fire.

See also here.

British government help for Bahraini torturers

This video says about itself:

22 November 2015

Bahraini security forces are torturing detainees during interrogation. Institutions set up after 2011 to receive and investigate complaints lack independence and transparency.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Britain covered up extent of intelligence training

Monday 6th February 2017

BRITISH authorities were accused yesterday of covering up the provision of intelligence training to Bahraini police on how to gather information about protesters.

The government’s intelligence project was put in place after protesters in the Gulf kingdom were rounded up and sentenced to death, international human rights charity Reprieve claims.

Bahraini police officers were allegedly paid by the Foreign Office to visit Belfast in August 2015 so that the Police Service of Northern Ireland could teach them how to gather intelligence ahead of demonstrations.

Protesters in Bahrain, such as Mohammed Ramadan, have been targeted by police and tortured into falsely confessing to capital crimes.

Mr Ramadan, a father of three young children, is now on death row and could be executed at any time.

The training, which also included sessions on the use of water cannon, dog handling and public order tactics, was kept secret.

The government has repeatedly denied providing public order training to Bahrain’s security forces.

A statement from the Cabinet Office said: “The UK does not fund any programmes in Bahrain focused on public order.”

However, documents obtained by Reprieve show that Bahrain’s police received an “introduction to combined operational training with a focus on public order.”

The training was prepared by Northern Ireland police officers during a week-long “scoping” visit to Bahrain in April-May 2015, during which they assessed Bahrain’s public order set-up, Reprieve said.

Reprieve death penalty team director Maya Foa said: “It is outrageous that the government has covered up this project, which risks supporting the execution of protesters in Bahrain.

“Bahrain is notorious for arresting, torturing and sentencing to death people involved in protests.

“By training Bahrain’s police how to gather intelligence on protesters, there is a serious risk that Britain is helping them arrest and execute people who are guilty of nothing more than calling for reform.

“It is scandalous that the government has sought to sweep this under the carpet.”

Bahrainis protest executions of tortured political prisoners

This video says about itself:

The Brutal Backlash Against Protest In Bahrain (2011)

Undercover Kingdom: With civil unrest in Bahrain worsening, protesters continue to suffer under a government determined to quell dissent by using brute force and manipulating the media’s message.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Bahrain protests after three tortured men are executed

Monday 16th January 2017

BAHRAINIS took to the streets in protest yesterday after the ruling monarchy executed three men whom its torturers had forced to confess to a deadly 2014 bombing.

Abbas al-Samea, Sami Mushaima and Ali al-Singace were found guilty in 2015 of killing two Bahraini policemen and an Emirati officer deployed to strengthen the island country’s security forces.

A court upheld their death sentences last Monday and they were executed yesterday by being shot in the heart.

The prisoners were the first to be executed since 2010 — the year before widespread pro-democracy demonstrations were put down by force with the help of Saudi and Emirati soldiers.

Clashes continued throughout yesterday, despite Bahrain’s rulers flooding the streets with riot police.

Images posted online showed Bahrainis blocking roads by burning tyres and other debris …

“It is nothing short of an outrage — and a disgraceful breach of international law — that Bahrain has gone ahead with these executions,” legal action charity Reprieve director Maya Foa said.

“The death sentences handed to Ali, Sami and Abbas were based on ‘confessions’ extracted through torture, and the trial was an utter sham.”

Mr Samea and Mr Mushaima were given electric shocks, beaten, burned with cigarettes, deprived of sleep and sexually assaulted while in custody, according to Reprieve.

Mr Singace’s mum said that her son had also been tortured.

The killing of the three comes amid a sweeping crackdown on dissent in the kingdom backed and armed by Britain.

Leading human rights activist Nabeel Rajab remains locked up for posting tweets about the Saudi-led war on Yemen and torture in Bahraini prisons.

The Gulf country is strongly supported by Britain, which is building a new £30 million naval base to extend its control over oil and gas supplies. The US navy’s Fifth Fleet is based in Bahrain.

As well as [selling] weapons and military gear, Britain also trains Bahrain’s police and a British military officer is embedded in Bahrain’s Interior Ministry.

From 1966 to 1998, the country’s top torturer was British former colonial officer Ian Henderson.

All British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson had to say about the executions was that the government is “opposed to the death penalty” and that “the Bahraini authorities are aware of our position.”

Mohammed Ramadan & Husain Moosa are now under imminent threat of execution in Bahrain – wife pleads for help: here.

How UK’s support for Bahrain tyranny allows journalism to be crushed: here.