Cairo – June 6th, 2012
ANHRI condemns the detention of Nabeel Rajab, prominent rights activist and head of the Gulf Center for Human Rights, by the Bahraini authorities for the second time in less than a month and a few days following his release in yet another case.
ANHRI is not certain of the nature of the new charges against Rajab. However, he noted on Twitter that there was a “malicious complaint” filed against him by some former officers and Eissa Ben-Hendi, advisor of the King, because of alleged insulting content to the Bahraini Prime Minister in Rajab’s blog entries.
On May 28th, Rajab was released on bail of 300 dinars and banned from traveling on the case of “Publicly insulting a statutory body on Twitter”. On June 6th, Rajab’s case was adjourned to June 12th, and was detained again on the pretext of the new malicious complaint following an investigation at the public prosecution.
“It seems that there is a warrant to be issued against me because the investigators have been present before the initiation of the investigation,” stated Rajab on Twitter a few moments before his detention. Other activists mentioned that the guards of the prison where Rajab is currently detained had been at the investigations office before the procedures ended. Rajab’s tweet and the activists’ reports prove that there was earlier plotting to arrest Rajab.
“Rajab’s detention is a continuation of the series of harassment against him because of his work in favor of human rights, defense of the oppressed, and expression of his views. The Bahraini regime is penalizing Rajab because he dreams of a free and independent Bahrain,” said ANHRI.
Rajab served as the chairman of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights, and is currently the chairman of the Gulf Center for Human Rights. He is also a member of the Human Rights Watch’s Advisory Board of the Middle East and North Africa.
The Bahraini authorities detained Rajab in early May and accused him of numerous charges, including “participating in assemblies and calling for an unauthorized march”.
ANHRI calls on the Bahraini authorities to immediately release Rajab and all prisoners of conscience in the country if it is earnest in its alleged respect to human rights and international conventions that guarantee freedom of opinion and expression, assembly, and peaceful demonstration.
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