EP Hosts Event: Bahrain 6 Years on- Where to Go from Here?
2017-03-03 - 9:35 p
Bahrain Mirror: An event held on March 1, 2017, entitled, "Bahrain 6 years on - where to go from here?" that was hosted by MEP Julie Ward (S&D) in the European Parliament, focused on what next steps could be taken in order to pressure Bahraini authorities to live up to their human rights commitments, after a continuous, and in the past year, largely intensified crackdown on civil society and political dissent.
The panel brought together experts from different fields, including representatives of the Bahrain's civil society, international human rights organisations and members of the European Parliament.
During the event, MEPs Julie Ward and Ana Gomes reaffirmed their continuous commitment to support human rights and democracy in Bahrain. Both have raised awareness and pushed for coherent EU actions by calling on the European External Action Service and EU Member States to act on European Parliament's resolutions on Bahrain.
For his part, Husain Jawad Parweez, director of the European-Bahraini Organisation for Human Rights, reported on his own case as prisoner of conscience in Bahrain, and to the astonishment of the audience, reported that around 70 protests take place across Bahrain on a daily basis yet this remains largely unknown to the international community due to the lack of media coverage.
Speakers from FIDH and Reprieve concentrated respectively on the role of the EU and the UK to pressure the Bahraini government to respect human rights. Jean-Marie Rouge from FIDH stressed that it is important to closely follow the current constitutional changes in Bahrain which could enable military courts to try civilians. He further underlined the importance of digital security for activists.
Ben Pitler from Reprieve concentrated on the UK's support for a false narrative of alleged human rights reforms in Bahrain, when the situation is actually worsening.
The speakers also agreed on further follow-up activities which could raise additional awareness of the situation on the ground and the complicity of some EU member states.
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