Political Prisoners' Families to Ombudsman and HR Institute: We Demand Immediate, Unconditional Freedom for Our Sons Who Are Dying Slowly

Families of political prisoners protest outside Jaw Prison (Photo from the Archive)
Families of political prisoners protest outside Jaw Prison (Photo from the Archive)

2024-04-05 - 4:28 م

Bahrain Mirror: Families of political prisoners held in Jaw Central Prison issued a message on Thursday, April 4th, 2024, addressed to both the head of the National Institute for Human Rights, Ali Al-Dirazi, and the Secretary-General of the Office of the Ombudsman, Ghada Hameed. In the message, they demanded the immediate and unconditional release of the political prisoners.

The families expressed their concern over the recent events in Jaw Prison following the death of Hussein Khalil (Al-Ramram), a prisoner convicted in politically-motivated cases who did not receive the required medical care. This led to peaceful protests in the prison buildings where more than 1,000 political prisoners are held.

They pointed out that the administration of Jaw Prison responded to the peaceful sit-in during the fasting month of Ramadan by cutting off water, not offering pre-dawn (Suhur) meals, delaying Iftar meals until midnight, and cutting off electricity from Building 7 by order of the prison director, Major Hisham Ibrahim. Drinking water and water in the toilets were also cut off, and air conditioners were repeatedly turned off as collective punishment against the prisoners.

The families affirmed that "official human rights institutions such as the Office of the Ombudsman or the National Institute for Human Rights did not express any condemnation of these arbitrary measures and collective punishments, despite meeting with the prisoners."

The families called for "the immediate and unconditional release of their sons, who were subjected to sham trials based on confessions extracted under torture." They stated, "For more than 10 years, our sons have been dying slowly in prison under a systematic policy of denial of treatment and psychological destruction of prisoners by confining them in cells for more than 22 hours a day."

While urging Al-Dirazi and Hameed to allow them to communicate with officials to request the immediate and unconditional release of the prisoners, they demanded that their sons be released and retried in a fair trial where evidence is not limited to confessions obtained under torture.

They emphasized the necessity of "investigating the continued cutting off of water and air conditioning and delaying of meals during the fasting month, holding the responsible party for these practices accountable, ensuring they cease and are not repeated, allowing immediate contact with our sons after a week-long interruption, conducting a transparent investigation into the death of prisoner Hussein Khalil (Al-Ramram), and conducting an investigation into the medical care provided to him."

Arabic Version