Hakeem Al-Araibiís Chances of Acquittal by Bahraini Judiciary Less than Chances of Surviving Cancer

2019-02-08 - 11:21 p

Bahrain Mirror (Exclusive): The Bahraini regime's defence with regards to the case of football player Hakeem Al-Araibi is focused on his right to "appeal a 10-year prison sentence". The state depicts the judiciary in the country as if it's "more honorable than honor itself!"

"Under no circumstances we can allow interference in our internal affairs or questioning the integrity of the independent Bahraini judiciary," said Bahrain's interior Minister Rashid bin Abdullah Al Khalifa, commenting on what he described as a wave of misinformation doubt casting over Hakeem Al-Araibi's case.

However, the ministry of foreign affairs said in a statement that Al-Araibi "holds the right to appeal this court decision if present before Bahrain's Court of Appeal, as others involved in this case have done so."

It is typical of an official regime to say that its judiciary is fair, even if it is used as any of its other instruments of repression. However, the Bahraini regime can no longer whitewash its judicial system, since it exposed it in front of the world as much as it used as a tool to punish and kill dissidents.

Although Al-Araibi's defence team proved, in recorded video evidence, that Al-Araibi was playing a football match when he was accused of participating in an attack on a police station, the judge, who also happens to be a member of the ruling family, sentenced him to 10 years in prison. So, is it possible for Al-Araibi to be acquitted in the Court of Appeal, if extradited to Bahrain?!

If the government answers ‘yes', then the question would be ‘why didn't the evidence presented by martyr Abbas Al-Samei, who was executed two years ago on charges of alleged involvement in the murder of a police officer, make a difference in his case? Didn't his defence team submit provide an alibi by presenting a letter from the school where he was working stating that he was in school at the time of the incident? Didn't Al-Samei exhaust all degrees of litigation?

This is merely one testament out of hundreds to the fact that the judiciary in Bahrain does not look at evidence, but listens to what the ruling family wants. What the ruling family wants is to punish Al-Araibi harshly in response to the role he played in preventing one of its members, Salman bin Ibrahim Al Khalifa, from reaching the FIFA presidency chair.

Let's put aside what the authorities describe as the "opposition's lies". Didn't the United Nations question the fairness of the trial of Bahrain's opposition leader Sheikh Ali Salman, Sheikh Hassan Sultan and Ali Al-Aswad? The UN Human Rights Office said there were "serious doubts" whether three Bahraini opposition leaders were given a fair trial.

"We are deeply concerned that these convictions are due to their opposition to the Bahraini Government and its policies," said office spokeswoman Marta Hurtado in an e-mailed comment.

"There are also serious doubts concerning whether the court proceedings respected the right to a fair trial."

What was said by the UN had been clearly stated by Amnesty International in its comment on the Bahraini judiciary upholding of Wa'ad dissolution. Amnesty International's Middle East research director Lynn Maalouf said: "The court's decision to dissolve the opposition political group Wa'ad, a group committed to non-violence, is just the latest manifestation of how the authorities have been resorting to all means, including the judiciary, to crush any form of dissent in their country"

The authorities said that any person like the prominent human rights defender Nabeel Rajab has the right to resort to litigation, but nothing has changed. These levels of litigation are nothing but a disregard for the ready-made verdicts that reach the judges in the form of restaurant orders.

 

Arabic Version

 


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