The freedom of expression, assembly and association continues to be severely restricted in Bahrain, where human rights defenders, opposition activists and religious leaders face arrest and harassment for speaking out against the government. Both the 2002 Press Law and the 2006 Anti-Terrorism Law, exploiting the law’s broad definition of terrorism, are employed to target the media.
In the country’s most famous freedom of expression case, Nabeel Rajab is charged with criticising the government on social media, for publishing a letter in the New York Times, as well as for criticising the government in a televised interview.
Other high-profile cases of free expression and association include opposition acitivst Ebrahim Sharif, who is charged with “incitement to hatred and contempt of the regime”, Sheikh Ali Salman, who is charged for calling for change of the regime, and Zainab al-Khawaja, who is charged for tearing up a picture of the king.
After the government has partially suspended al-Wasat newspaper, Bahrain’s only independent newspaper, a free media in Bahrain is de facto non existent. Prior government harassment against al-Wasat encompassed intimidation and the prosecution of key staff, one of whom, Karim Kakhrawi, died under torture.
4 September 2018 – Today, prominent activist Zainab Alkhawaja joined Ali Mushaima on the 35th day of his hunger strike outside the Bahraini Embassy in London. Ali is demanding basic hu... Read more
Ali Mushaima was hospitalised on the 30th day of his hunger strike outside the Bahrain Embassy in London to protest the ongoing mistreatment of his father, political prisoner Hassan Mushaima... Read more
Paris-Geneva-Manama, 29 August 2018 – For the second time since 2013, the United Nations (UN) Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (WGAD) has issued an Opinion regarding the legality of the... Read more
Americans for Democracy & Human Rights in Bahrain (ADHRB), the Bahrain Institute for Rights & Democracy (BIRD), and the European Centre for Democracy & Human Rights (ECDHR) call... Read more
13 July 2018 – On 5 July, Bahraini female political prisoner, Hajer Mansoor, was subjected to further threats and reprisals by Major Maryam Albardoli, the head of Isa Town Prison Centr... Read more
9 July 2018 – Today, Bahrain’s most prominent Shia cleric, Ayatollah Sheikh Isa Qassim, arrived in London to receive medical treatment. He landed at 3:31pm at Heathrow Airport from Bah... Read more
On 2 July, the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Democracy and Human Rights in the Gulf, chaired by Karen Lee MP, collaborated with the Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy (BIRD... Read more
25 June 2018 – Today, Bahrain’s Fourth Criminal Court handed down three-year sentence to female political activist, Najah Ahmed Yousif, on politically motivated charges. Judge Ali Aldh... Read more
21 June 2018 – Today, Bahrain’s High Criminal Court acquitted the leader of Bahrain’s dissolved opposition party Al-Wefaq, Sheikh Ali Salman, of politically motivated charges related t... Read more
European Parliament Adopts Resolution addressing the deteriorated Human Rights in Bahrain and calls for the release of Nabeel Rajab & Political Prisoners 14 June 2018 – Today, the... Read more