Elias Al-Mulla Released: His Next Mission is Defeating Cancer

2020-01-23 - 7:10 p

Bahrain Mirror (Exclusive): Elias Al-Mulla, a Bahraini youth, was released today at dawn on Wednesday (January 22, 2020). He entered prison at the age of 21 and was released at 28. When taken into custody, Al-Mulla was in good physical health, but he now suffers from cancer.

He was detained in 2012 and was a youth with a healthy body. He was tortured during detention and prevented from sleeping. He was coerced to sign ready confessions and was sentenced to 15 years in prison.

On March 10, 2015, security forces cracked down on a protest held by prisoners. Prisoners were collectively and brutally punished for weeks. Elias suffocated from the tear gas that penetrated into the hallways and prison cells. He was also severely beaten by police on his abdomen.

It was later revealed that he was suffering from cancer. In August 2015, Elias had spent 3 years in prison. He was transferred to the Bahraini defense force hospital without informing his family. They ended up finding out about their son from another inmate. His family rushed to the hospital; however, security forces prevented them from entering. Elias underwent surgery on August 5 and a part of his colon was removed to be tested. It was discovered that he had stage 3 colon cancer.

Elias suffered medical negligence during the following four years. The prison administration didn't take him to his appointments. When transferred to the hospital, he was taken in an armored vehicle that had very poor ventilation and didn't suit his medical condition. He was taken while having his hands and legs bound.

He was directly taken to prison after his chemotherapy sessions without allowing him to have time to rest. He was in constant pain. His family sent letters to the executive judge demanding his release so he could start his treatment journey outside prison. However, the judge refused every time and the public prosecution didn't respond. Meanwhile, the Ombudsman and National Institute for Human Rights seemed to be out of service and reach.

About one year ago, Elias's mother sent a videotaped appeal in which she called everyone to save her son. Her appeal was so emotional and received widespread public reaction, but despite her tears, the authorities turned a deaf ear.

Now, after eight years, and after repeated and non-stop demands from his family and human rights activists inside and outside Bahrain, these appeals were answered, as the family of Elias Al-Mulla was contacted to receive him after an order for his release. The young man went out to embrace his mother and his little sister. His next mission is to defeat cancer and stay by the side of his wonderful mother who fought on all fronts and didn't leave him alone for one moment in his long ordeal.

Arabic Version