Rights groups criticize prosecution of Sheikh Ali Salman, call Bahrain regime to release him immediately unconditionally

Rights groups criticize prosecution of Sheikh Ali Salman, call Bahrain regime to release him immediately unconditionally

Americans for Democracy & Human Rights in Bahrain (ADHRB), the Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy (BIRD), and the European Centre for Democracy and Human Rights (ECDHR) condemned “to the upmost degree” the ongoing prosecution of Bahrain’s opposition leader Sheikh Ali Salman.

(AhlulBayt News Agency) - Americans for Democracy & Human Rights in Bahrain (ADHRB), the Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy (BIRD), and the European Centre for Democracy and Human Rights (ECDHR) condemned “to the upmost degree” the ongoing prosecution of Bahrain’s opposition leader Sheikh Ali Salman.

In a joint statement released on Monday, the rights groups called on Manama to immediately and unconditionally release Sheikh Salman.

A Manama court is expected to issue a final verdict in an espionage case against the opposition leader on June 21.

Sheikh Salman, who is already serving a 4-year prison term, was allegedly charged with “spying for the state of Qatar” last November.

The charges stem from a mediation attempt between the Bahraini regime and opposition during the kingdom’s popular uprising in 2011. The initiative was well documented and had the support of Gulf states, the U.S. and the Bahraini monarch.

According to the rights groups, Sheikh Salman’s trial is an example of Manama’s assault on independent political and civil society ahead of this year’s legislative elections.

“The court’s decision to target Sheikh Ali Salman with charges that were clearly drudged up in order to undermine the voice of the opposition prior to the elections is absolutely egregious,” said ADHRB’s Executive Director Husain Abdulla.

The rights groups also urged Manama’s allies to pressure the regime into halting “its oppressive and systematic human rights violations and crackdown on civil and political society.”




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