After Being Sentenced to Life Imprisonment Mr.Alkhawaja gets Beaten after He Speaks in Court
Reports that other Activist Sentenced were beaten as well after Speaking
The Bahrain Youth Society for Human Rights (BYSHR) expresses its deep concern after receiving confirmed reports from a reliable source that Mr. Abdulhadi Alkhawaja, Former MENA Coordinator of Frontline Defenders and Former President of the Bahrain Centre for Human rights (BCHR), was beaten severely after court yesterday (22 June 2011). Mr. Alkhawaja’s daughter who had attended the trial had previously tweeted:
“After the sentence was read, my father raised his fist & shouted “WE SHALL CONTINUE ON THE PATH OF PEACEFUL RESISTANCE!” they started violently shoving my father out of the court room.”
The BYSHR has learned that Mr. Alkhawaja was beaten severely, mostly to his face that is still healing from 4 fractures sustained from the brutal beating he received during his arrest as well as in the incident when he had banged it against the floor to avoid being sexually assaulted in detention.
The BYSHR has learned from family members that Mr. Alkhawaja still has increasing pain in his jaw and that he could not eat or smile properly because of the pain. Mr. Alkhawaja is said to be taking painkillers constantly to ease that pain and that his face was numb (in the area where he had sustained injuries).
There are also reports that other activists sentenced also received a beating after they had yelled “Peaceful Peaceful” while being dragged out of the court. Unconfirmed reports that Mr. Mirza AlMahroos, Prominent cleric and Political activist also sentenced to life, reportedly sustained an injury to his eye.
The Bahrain Youth Society for Human Rights (BYSHR) calls for immediate intervention in this case and is extremely worried as to the well being of Mr. Alkhawaja especially given the injuries he has already sustained. The BYSHR calls on the Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders to take urgent action.
Note: Mr.Abdulhadi Alkhawaja’s family received a letter from him highlighting his medical condition, the letter is available upon request in Arabic and English.