8 inmates on hunger strike at Jau Prison reportedly fainted on Monday night, September 3 in Jau Prison building 5. According to the prisoners, they were delayed for four hours, which suggests that there is continued medical negligence despite authorities’ claims to closely monitor the health of the prisoners.
Today, September 5, families of the striking inmates gathered outside the Ombudsman building for a sit in, raising banners that read “Should we wait for our children to come out in coffins?” and “Your data tells one thing, reality tells another.
Alba Party MP Kenny MacAskill tabled a written question asking the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, “what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies of the hunger strike in Jau Prison in Bahrain.”
So far, the UK government has made no statements concerning the hunger strike despite growing concerns worldwide, including a recent statement from the UN Human Rights Office “deeply concerned for the wellbeing of those involved”.
After spending 20 days in solitary confinement, political prisoner on hunger strike Ahmed Jaafar was transferred to building 5 in Jau Prison. Mr Jaafar has been subjected to brutality by the Jau Prison police, which began with physical assaults, racial slurs, and beatings. While in solitary confinement, he had his hands restrained behind his back, ankle restraints, and a chain connecting his leg and hand restraints. This prevented him from bathing and carrying out his daily prayers.
Sayed Ahmed Alwadaei, Director of Advocacy, Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy (BIRD), commented:
“The Bahraini government is gambling with time as the hunger strike enters its second month. The situation of the prisoners conditions as the hunger strike goes on as the risk on them and the state is higher. Instead of lying about the true scale of the hunger strike, the government must listen to the demands of the prisoners. Without this, there will be serious consequences if a prisoner dies. The momentum of this strike is only growing and it will not end without achieving the legitimate demands of the prisoners. For the past decade, the UK Government has trained the bodies responsible for the degrading treatment of prisoners. Their silence on the largest hunger strike makes it clear they are siding with those abusing prisoners ”