Child Abbas Al-Khabbaz Passes Away Due to Bahraini Regime’s Negligence

2016-12-24 - 12:00 am

Bahrain Mirror (Exclusive): On Wednesday (December 14, 2016), the Bahraini 4-year-old child Abbas, who is the son of detainee Mohammad Al-Khabbaz, passed away. This comes after the Bahraini authorities refused for over two years to issue a passport for the child, which would have allowed him to receive medical treatment abroad.

Rubbing salt in the wound, the Bahraini regime inflicted even further suffering on the Al-Khabbaz family with the child's death caused by the authorities' negligence. This is how the regime treats dissent in the island kingdom. Mohammad Al-Khabbaz and his brother Mortada were sentenced to life in prison, while their other brother was sentenced to death.

However, that was not enough for the authorities, as they deliberately stalled the issuance of a passport or travel permit for his son Abbas, fully aware that any delay in his much needed medical treatment abroad would undoubtedly cause his death.

Abbas was suffering from a brain hemorrhage that occurred when he was eight months old. He also suffered from suffocation during birth. His mother says that "he has a condition of Water on the Brain [Hydrocephalus]," adding that he needed to undergo an urgent surgery at the time since the buildup required proper fluid drainage.

At that time, his father refused to allow him to have surgery in a Bahraini hospital since it is a difficult medical operation. As soon as he and his wife made the decision to have their son undergo medical procedure in a specialized hospital in the Saudi capital Riyadh, the security authorities were ahead of them, as they arrested Mohammad Al-Khabbaz after announcing the death of a policeman in Sehla on February 14, 2013.

When Mohammad was taken into custody, his son was 3 months old that was before he could have applied for his passport. Since then, his wife worked on getting a travel permit for their son, yet despite all the medical reports that confirm Abbas was in urgent need of medical treatment abroad, the authorities retaliated against the family by punishing the child out of hatred towards his father.

"I tried to get a [signed] approval from my [detained] husband to complete the paperwork for my child's passport application in order to travel with him so he could receive treatment, yet all my attempts failed," said the mother.

"Every time I referred to the Passports Directorate the issue became even more complicated while my child's condition seriously worsened. This is a humanitarian issue and nothing more. I did not ask for the impossible. All I asked of the competent authorities is to facilitate the issuing of my son's passport so he could receive treatment. He cannot even breathe without a medical device. I also wish if my husband would be allowed to visit his son. He has only seen him once when he was three months old," she added.

In December 9, 2014, the Interior Ministry decided to issue a passport for Abbas who had turned one year and eight months at the time. However, it was too late, since his deteriorating medical condition prevented him from traveling.

Sadly, although Abbas passed away, the authorities refused to allow his father Mohammad to see him for a last time and say his goodbyes. They even refused to allow him to attend his son's funeral. Mohammad and his child are two more added to the list of many witnesses to the Bahraini regime's atrocities and disregard of human values.

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