Document - Bahrain: Student detained amid reports of torture: Hassan ‘Oun
UA: 4/12 Index: MDE 11/001/2012 Bahrain Date: 5 January 2012 URGENT ACTION STUDENT DETAINED AMID REPORTS OF TORTURE Hassan ‘Oun, an 18-year-old student accused of illegal public gathering, has allegedly been subjected to tortured and other ill-treatment while in detention in a police station, His brother is in hiding and may also be at risk of torture or other ill-treatment if arrested. Hassan ‘Oun is an 18-year-old student at the Shaikh Khalifa Insitute of Technology in the Busaiteen neighbourhood, north of Manama, the capital of Bahrain. He was arrested on 3 January 2012 from a garage in the nearby district of ‘Arad, where he was doing his vocational training. Several policemen in civilian clothes took him in a police car to the Samaheej police station where he was interrogated by the police. He managed to call his family but when members of the family went to the police station to ask about him, they were told no one by that name was held there. The police initially told family members that Hassan ‘Oun could be in the Public Prosecution Office (PPO) in Manama or in a prison. When the family said that Hassan had contacted them from the police station they admitted that he was held there but his family was not allowed to see him. The police said that they had an order to arrest him but Hassan ‘Oun later told a lawyer that the police did not produce an arrest warrant when he was arrested. On 4 January, Hassan ‘Oun was taken to the PPO and he was interrogated there in the presence of a lawyer. He told the prosecution that when he was in the police station he had been asked about information he provided to the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights about being tortured and threatened during a previous arrest. His family told Amnesty International that the lawyer and other detainees who were in the PPO building saw marks of torture on his body and that one of his legs was swollen. He told the lawyer that he been forced to stand for about 11 hours and that he had been beaten on his feet with a hose and threatened with rape. The PPO has decided to detain Hassan ‘Oun for 45 days pending investigation. He has been charged with illegal public gathering. He had been detained before in connection with anti-government protests in 2011. His brother Ahmed, aged 16, is said to be in hiding. The police apparently wanted to arrest him and told the family that they have an arrest warrant for him. He will sit exams next Sunday and his family fears that if he is arrested he will not only be at risk of torture but also he may miss his exams. Please write immediately in English, Arabic or your own language: Express concern about the detention of Hassan ‘Oun and urge his immediate release if he is held solely for his non-violent criticism of the Bahraini authorities; Urge the Bahraini authorities to protect him from torture and other ill-treatment; Urge the authorities to immediately launch an impartial and independent investigation into his alleged torture or other ill-treatment and to make its results public and to bring to justice anyone responsible. Urge the authorities not to arrest his brother Ahmed if he has not committed a recognisable criminal offence. PLEASE SEND APPEALS BEFORE 16 FEBRUARY 2012 TO: King Shaikh Hamad bin ‘Issa Al Khalifa Office of His Majesty the King P.O. Box 555 Rifa’a Palace, al-Manama, Bahrain Fax: +973 17664587 Salutation: Your Majesty Prime Minister Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa Office of the Prime Minister P.O. Box 1000, al-Manama, Bahrain Fax: +973 17533033 Salutation: Your Highness Minister of Justice and Islamic Affairs Shaikh Khalid bin Ali bin Abdullah Al Khalifa Ministry of Justice and Islamic Affairs, P.O. Box 13, al-Manama, Bahrain Fax: +973 175 31 284 Salutation: Your Excellency Also send copies to diplomatic representatives accredited to your country. Please insert local diplomatic addresses below: Name Address 1 Address 2 Address 3 Fax Fax number Email Email address Salutation Salutation
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URGENT ACTION STUDENT DETAINED AMID REPORTS OF TORTURE ADDITIONAL INFORMATION Nearly 11 months have passed since thousands of people demonstrated at the Pearl Roundabout in February and March 2011. However, scores of health workers, opposition and human rights activists, teachers and others are still facing trials or are serving prison sentences in Bahrain. Despite the heavy handed approach of the Bahrain security forces in dealing with protestors smaller-scale anti-government protests have continued. These are always accompanied by arrests of activists. On 23 November, the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry (BICI), established by Royal Decree on 29 June to investigate abuses during the March/February protests and other abuses in the following months, issued its 500 page report. Hundreds of cases of human rights violations were covered in the report, including beatings of protesters by security forces, mass arbitrary arrests of mainly Shi’a opposition activists and widespread torture, with five deaths resulting from torture in custody. At least 46 people have died in connection with the protests, including five security personnel. The report urged the Bahraini government to immediately establish an independent body made up of representatives of civil society, the opposition and the government; to oversee the implementation of the BICI’s recommendations; to usher in legislative reforms to ensure laws are in line with international human rights standards; and to bring to account those responsible for abuses. Name: Hassan ‘Oun and his brother Ahmed Gender m/f: both male UA: 4/12 Index: MDE 11/001/2012 Issue Date: 5 January 2012