NEWS
Bahraini court upholds Nabeel Rajab’s five-year prison sentence
05 Jun 2018
BY RYAN MCCHRYSTAL
Human rights activist Nabeel Rajab has been subjected to ongoing judicial harassment.

Human rights activist Nabeel Rajab has been subjected to ongoing judicial harassment.

Bahrain’s High Criminal Court of Appeal has upheld a five-year conviction for human rights activist Nabeel Rajab for critical tweets made from his account condemning Saudi-led airstrikes in Yemen and condemning the use of torture at Bahrain’s notorious Jau Prison.

Rajab, the president of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights and an Index on Censorship Freedom of Expression Award winner, has been sentenced in all to seven years in prison across two separate trials. In February 2018 he was sentenced to five years in prison for tweeting, which was added to a two-year conviction in June 2017 for “broadcasting fake news” relating to television interviews he gave in 2015.

Rajab has unsuccessfully appealed these convictions on four occasions and is expected to pursue a fifth and final appeal at Bahrain’s Court of Cassation.

Index on Censorship condemns the imprisonment of Rajab and the relentless harassment and intimidation the high-profile activist has seen since his involvement as a peaceful activist during the Bahrain uprising in 2011, during which time he has been in and out of prison on numerous occasions. He has been in prison on a continual basis since June 2016, during which time his health has deteriorated significantly.

“Nabeel Rajab is being persecuted by Bahrain for expressing his opinion,” Jodie Ginsberg, CEO of Index on Censorship, said. “Opinions are not crimes. The authorities should release him, and Bahrain’s allies – including the UK – should be advocating at the highest levels for his release.”

Bahraini injustice: Nabeel Rajab conviction for tweeting upheld

Bahrain’s Court of Cassation has upheld human rights activist Nabeel Rajab’s five-year conviction for critical tweets made from his account condemning Saudi-led airstrikes in Yemen and the use of torture at Bahrain’s notorious Jau Prison.

Open letter to Bahraini authorities: Drop all charges and release Nabeel Rajab

NGOs are concerned that, with Nabeel Rajab’s appeal hearing scheduled on 31 December, authorities may be planning to increase his sentence under cover of the world’s celebrations of the new year.

Happy birthday Nabeel!

Bahraini human rights activist Nabeel Rajab is spending his third birthday in prison. Send him a birthday message on Twitter or Facebook

This week on Index: Remembering Anna Politkovskaya

This week Index remembered murdered journalist Anna Politkovskaya and spoke out in support of human rights in Bahrain and Turkey.

Ryan McChrystal

Assistant Online Editor at Index on Censorship

Ryan McChrystal is Assistant Editor, Online at Index on Censorship, where he provides support for the news and online team in addition to creating content. He has previously held various editorial roles, including as a local reporter, a market reporter and most recently as a features writer at an SME-focused magazine. He graduated in history and politics from Queen’s University, Belfast.

Contact: [email protected] | public key
Ryan McChrystal

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