Despite pressure from the UN and the international community, the death penalty continues to be part of the Bahraini legal system.
In January 2017, capital punishment resumed within the Kingdom, with three torture victims, Abbas AlSameea, Sami Mushaima and Ali Alsingace, executed six days after the Court of Cassation upheld their death sentence. Crimes that warrant the death penalty include treason, terrorism, apostasy and drug trafficking. The absence of a precise definition of terrorism has allowed the Bahraini government to exploit its legal system so as to criminalise acts of opposition, free expression and assembly. The death penalty is conducted via firing squads.
As of December 2018, there are currently 20 Bahraini nationals on death row, all sentenced in political cases. Most of the inmates relate they have been tortured in order to extract a confession that was then used against them at their trial.
Of the 20 death-row inmates, 5 individuals are at imminent risk of execution, having exhausted all domestic remedies. The final step in their case before implementation of the death sentence is ratification of the sentence by the King.
Not only does the death penalty itself stand in conflict with the International Covenant for Civil and Political Rights, but those sentenced to death regularly report instances of undue process, torture and violations of personal and human rights.
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