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By Index on Censorship / 16 August, 2012
Index on Censorship condemns the sentencing human rights defender and Index award winner Nabeel Rajab to three years in prison
Index on Censorship condemns the sentencing in Bahrain today of human rights defender and Index award winner Nabeel Rajab to three years in prison for charges related to “illegal gathering”.
Kirsty Hughes, Chief Executive of Index on Censorship, said:
“We strongly condemn the imprisonment of Nabeel Rajab for speaking out against human rights violations. It shows the lengths Bahrain’s government will go to silence activists — and exposes their token statements in favour of reform as phoney. Index calls for the immediate release of Rajab, and for the Bahrain government to respect fully universal human rights, and to implement a serious reform process as promised since last year.”
Prominent human rights defender and president of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights (BCHR) Nabeel Rajab, was today sentenced to three years in prison for charges related to “illegal gathering”. Rajab, who was awarded an Index on Censorship Free Expression Award this year, has spoken out internationally against the human rights violations committed by the Bahrain’s government following a brutal crackdown on pro-democracy protests on 14 February 2011. Despite promises of reform, including commissioning an independent inquiry into the country’s crackdown following February last year, unrest continues in the troubled Gulf Kingdom.
Rajab still faces defamation charges for allegedly insulting the Sunni residents of Muharraq on Twitter. The verdict in that case has been postponed until 23 August.Tags: Bahrain | freedom of expression | Index Awards 2012 | Kirsty Hughes | Nabeel Rajab
Don’t miss the spring issue of Index on Censorship magazine. Post Charlie Hebdo our commentators take a global view at how threats are being used to stop writers and artists, with Ariel Dorfman, David Edgar, Father Ted’s Arthur Mathews, Turkish novelist Elif Shafak and others. Also, major general Tim Cross and internet guru Martha Lane Fox go head to head on national security versus privacy, and Ismail Einashe on the perils of escaping from Eritrea.