Child Mohammad Al-Moímen Known as the ďExplosives ExpertĒ to Bahrain Mirror: I was Beaten & Tortured with Electric Shocks

2015-06-23 - 4:58 p

Bahrain Mirror (Exclusive): On March 15, 2015, reports emerged about a bus being stopped on the King Fahd Causeway with Bahraini visitors from Iraq on board, and then it was announced that everyone on board (55 persons) were arrested. Bahrain's interior ministry claimed that this took place after finding a bag packed with "explosives" on the vehicle and took a wanted person, who was among the passengers, into custody.

According to the Public Prosecution, the seized bag included electric devices in which 140 detonators, 41 electrical circuits used for detonating explosive devices, a remote control and some mobile phones were hidden.

The public Prosecutor stated that investigations into the incident found that the bag belongs to one of the passengers who happens to be a juvenile and that he had brought it from Iraq, at the request of a relative there who is also wanted in a number of security cases, to deliver to someone in the Sitra area for the purpose of using it in terrorist acts.

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News agencies reported the incident, saying that Bahraini security forces seized bomb-making equipment smuggled from Iraq aboard a passenger bus to be used in attacks, while AFP said that Bahraini authorities arrested a juvenile who came from Iraq in possession of "bomb and explosives making materials".

The Juvenile was 13-year-old Mohammad Mansour Al-Mo'men who was apprehended along with 7 members of the Al-Mo'men family who were aboard the same bus. The women and children passengers who were also interrogated and released told the media that the bus passed through the Kuwaiti border at Al-Nuwaiseeb and Al-Abdali ports and confirmed that nothing was suspected nor confiscated, and that the bag doesn't belong to anyone on the bus.

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Torture of a Child

The public prosecution charged Al-Mo'men with "import and possession of explosive materials" for terrorist purposes, and was held in the juvenile detention center until he was released on June 15, 2015.

"They hit me at the causeway because I wouldn't confess that the bag was mine," Mohammad said. They came with a civilian car at the causeway to transfer him to the criminal investigations directorate, known as the "den of torture". He was really frightened. They cuffed him and forced him into the vehicle, where he was interrogated about the alleged bag along the way and everytime he denied having to do anything with it, they beat him severely.

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"The officer told me to lift one of my legs and whenever I got tired and lowered it, they beat me," Mohammad said. They questioned him in the criminal investigations unit and asked him many questions about the reason behind his trip to Iraq yet he only had one answer "I was on a visit with my mother". The officer; however, didn't like this answer so he raised his hand and slapped the child very hard and said: "Do you remember now why you went to Iraq? You went to a wedding of a wanted suspect!" In a weak voice, the child replied: "I forgot."

Al-Mo'men described how he was severely beaten during the first two days of his detention by the officer who admitted to him that he was the one who tortured his detained brother Ali and threatened him that his fate would be the same as his brother's if he doesn't confess. Despite all that, Mohammad denied having to do anything with the bag the first time he was taken to public prosecution's office. Because he constantly denied any connection to the bag, the investigations officer took him to the electric torture chamber. He screamed after he was given electric shocks. His screams; however, did not trigger any sympathy or mercy in the officer's heart. The electric torture marks were proof of that torture after he had his first visit in the juvenile detention center.

"After two days of torture, I confessed what they wanted me to confess at 2 a.m.," he stated. That child couldn't bear that much of brutal torture, so he decided to confess that that alleged bag was his, hoping to escape from that hell he was in. They took him to the public prosecution's office and threatened him that if he denied the charges once again. he'll be subjected to even more brutal torture, so Mohammad confessed before the public prosecution to something he didn't do.

Ben 10 Car

A remote control Ben 10 car was all the child wanted and nothing more. He bought it during his stay in Iraq. He was so happy to have it. Mohammad didn't know it will be taken away from him and that he will be deprived of his family as well. The toy car was confiscated by security forces and then returned to the family but without its owner.

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"His big sized body makes him look older than he really is," his aunt said, adding that "the fear that overwhelms him when something happens makes him an easy target."

Mohammad always felt weak because he was orphaned. He lost his father when he was only seven years old. His sister said that he always cries whenever he faces a situation and says, "it is because my father isn't here with me." His mother meant everything to him after that. He never left her side and was always worried that he would lose her too. The security forces noticed that when he was separated from his mother on the King Fahd Causeway, where a female officer felt sorry for him and took him to see his mother for a few seconds only.

Alone without a mother or father and among human beasts and child torturers, the orphan Mohammad was detained for three months in the juvenile prison. He was subjected to humiliation and harassment at the hands of an officer named Ali Said. Officers Ahmad Al-Damestani and Hanan Isa were amused by frightening him. They deliberately yelled at him when they wanted to wake him up and knocked on his door very loudly so that he would wake up frightened and horrified.

Astonishment was evident on his face as he spoke of the way he was taken to the court as if he was a dangerous criminal. He was taken in a civilian car escorted by two other cars and a patrol police vehicle. The police officers deliberately cuffed him from the back. That caused him immense pain especially because he had a surgical operation on his right arm. His mother had requested that they cuff him from the front due to his medical condition and out of sympathy.

Al-Mo'men Family

Mohammad was charged not because he dreamt of playing with a remote control car, but because he is related to the martyr Ali Al-Mo'men, one of the icons of the February 14 revolution,who was shot dead by regime forces at the Lualua (Pearl) Roundabout in February 2011. This martyr was known for saying: "I sacrifice myself for my homeland".

Mohammad wasn't the only one from the Al-Mo'men family targeted by the regime. There are 8 other family members behind bars, including his brother, two .uncles, and cousins.This family which resides in the island of Sitra is known to have the most number of members behind bars, let alone a martyr

Al-Mo'men Family Detainees:

Number

Name

Age

Date of Arrest

Charge

1

Ali Mousa Abdullah Al-Mo’men

25

March 6, 2013

Burning a vehicle, Joining rally, 19-year sentence

2

Yusuf Ali Abdullah Al-Mo’men

31

March 15, 2015

Still on trial

3

Ahmad Abdulhussein Abdullah Al-Mo’men

18

March 15, 2015

Still on trial

4

Mohammad Mansour Mousa Abdullah Al-Mo’men

13

March 15, 2015

Released on June 15, 2015

5

Mohammad Ahmad Abdullah Al-Mo’men

18

March 18, 2015

Still on trial

6

Aqil Abdullah Ali Al-Mo’men

28

March 19, 2015

Still on trial

7

Mohammad Sadiq Ali Abdullah Al-Mo’men

36

March 21, 2015

Still on trial

8

Mohammad Jaafar Abdullah Al-Mo’men

25

June 5, 2015

Still on trial

9

Mohammad Abdullah Ali Al-Mo’men

39

June 6, 2015

Still on Trial


New Chapter of Torture

Mohammad stands silent after every visit staring at the exit door, hoping that this horrible nightmare he's in will soon come to an end so he could return to his loving mother's arms and to his siblings. He always tells them he wants to leave this prison and visit his father's grave that he missed so dearly and that he missed his home, mother, siblings, school and toys. They; however, have no answer for him but to say "no one knows when you will come out."

Mohammad was released over a week ago (June 15, 2015). The public prosecution; however, has referred his case which includes four other persons to the criminal court. Following rounds of torture and forced confessions, another chapter of torture is awaiting this child on June 25, 2015 in the halls of Bahrain's "system of injustice" as Human Rights Watch describes it.

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