French Parliamentarians Pressure Foreign Minister on HR Situation in Bahrain

2021-10-19 - 7:20 ص

Bahrain Mirror: Two Members of Parliament (MPs) for France drew the attention of the Minister of Europe and Foreign Affairs, Jean-Yves Le Drian, to the worrying human rights situation in Bahrain, Americans for Democracy and Human Rights in Bahrain (ADHRB) reported.

All MPs made explicit reference to the concerning state of political opposition leader Hassan Mushaima, whose health continues to deteriorate amidst numerous human rights violations by prison authorities.

Over the last few months, multiple French MPs have expressed their concern for the government's systematic violation of human rights, and have urged the Foreign Minister to address the treatment of political prisoners in Bahrain.

The three MPs who most recently highlighted the concerning developments in the country were Mr. Michel Larive, Ms. Maud Gatel, and Mr. Guillaume Garot. 

Mr. Michel Larive, member of the Commission of Cultural Affairs and Education and a member of the La France Insoumise, mentioned the reports by Hasan Mushaim's family that prison authorities are exerting psychological pressure and punitive measures which has exacerbated his deteriorating health.

Ms. Maud Gatel, member of the Commission of Foreign Affairs and a member of the Democratic Movement, referred to the worrying human rights situation and the treatment of political opponents in Bahrain.

Ms. Gatel stated that France has never failed to call upon the Bahraini authorities to respect human rights, recalling at every opportunity the need to guarantee freedom of association, the right to demonstrate, the establishment of an independent judiciary, and the right to fair trial.

Despite the initiatives of French diplomacy to change the Kingdom's position, many are still prosecuted and sentenced simply because of their political opinions. Ms. Gatel reminded the Foreign Minister that this is the case with Hassan Mushaima, who, despite his age and bad health, is denied access to health care. Ms. Gatel stated that this story is not isolated in Bahrain, and is reminiscent of the life imprisonment of the leader of Al-Wefaq, Ali Salman, in 2018, a decision that France and the European Union have unanimously denounced.

Mr. Guillaume Garot, the Vice-President of the Commission of Sustainable Development and Regional Planning and a member of the Socialist Party, drew the attention of the Foreign Minister to the situation of human rights in Bahrain, and that ten years after the repression of the Bahraini uprising in 2011, the Kingdom is regularly cited for its violations of dignity and human rights. He added that NGOs, including Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, have reported multiple acts of torture and ill-treatment of political prisoners.

Mr. Garot referred to the aggravation of this situation with the outbreak of COVID-19 and denying detainees of medical treatment, including Abduljalil Al-Singace and Hasan Mushaima. Mr. Garot demanded to know what actions France intends to take with the international community and Bahrain to reaffirm its commitment to the respect of human rights in this country.

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