Mohammed Habib Al-Muqdad


Date of Arrest: 1 April 2011
Prison Sentence: 68 years
Torture: Hung by his ankles, beaten with water hoses, forced standing, sexual abuse, sleep depravation, electrocution all over his body and private parts, forced to gargle with his own urine, swallow spit, kiss the shoes of the guards and pictures of the King, and sit naked for long periods of time.
Health: Needs specialist health care. Previously diagnosed with cancer and requires surgical operation to treat a deviated septum in his nose.

Mohammed Habib Al-Muqdad is a prominent religious figure, social activist, and Shia cleric. He is well known for delivering straightforward speeches that criticize the Bahraini authorities that also aim to raise public awareness on human rights issues and fight poverty and corruption.

Al-Muqdad was first arrested in August 2010 for oppositional activity as an activist. While serving his prison sentence, he was subjected to torture daily and was held in solitary confinement for 60 days. During his trial he was able to show more than 50 traces of electric shock on his body and was able to produce evidence that a member of the royal family perpetrated his torture. However, the presiding judge asked him to remain silent as “this court has its respect.”

On the 1 April 2011, Al-Muqdad was once again arrested for criticizing the corruption, repression, and violation of human rights in Bahrain. During his arrest, National Security officers dragged Al-Muqdad from the house where he was hiding, stripped him naked and beat him all over his body while he attempted to cover his private parts with his hands. Terrified and continuously insulted, he was transferred to the Castle, an underground prison.

In prison, Al-Muqdad was subjected to several methods of torture, including being hung upside down, beaten with water hoses on his legs and the soles of his feet for several hours, being forced to gargle with his own urine at the hospital, made to sit naked for extended periods of time, sleep deprivation, and sexual assault with sticks. He was also electrocuted all over his body and on his genitals. Al-Muqdad was also subjected to humiliation and psychological torture when the guards spit in his mouth and forced him to swallow and also to kiss their shoes and pictures of the king. In 2013, Al-Muqdad was admitted to the hospital due to severe stomach pains as well as difficulty ingesting food. The symptoms began a year prior to the hospitalization, but the authorities reportedly refused to provide him with proper medical treatment. The doctors ruled that the pain was a direct result of the severe torture and injuries to his abdomen, and stated that Al-Muqdad must undergo further testing.

Before his court hearing, the authorities reportedly tortured and threatened Al-Muqdad to remain silent about the ill-treatment he was subjected to while held in detention. was not allowed to meet with his lawyer before the trial, and during the court session, he was not permitted to speak. Further, his request for an interview with the judges beforehand was dismissed. Mohammed Habib Al-Muqdad was sentenced to a total of 68 years in prison.

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