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Bahrain

Nabeel Rajab: West must stop duplicity over Bahrain

Prominent Bahraini human rights activist Nabeel Rajab has urged Western countries to break silence and stop duplicity over the status quo in Bahrain.

In a letter from prison sent to the Oslo Freedom Forum (OFF) on Wednesday, Rajab censured Western governments for supporting Bahrain’s suppressive regime and their hypocrisy over what is happening in the country.

Bahraini people are the victims of both autocratic regimes and democratic West, the letter read, adding that the Western countries provide the Al Khalifa regime with weapons to repress the people.

Founded in 2009, OFF is a series of international conferences, organized by the New York-based non-profit Human Rights Foundation under the slogan “challenging Power”.

Rajab was sentenced to six months in prison in January for posting tweets deemed critical of the Al Khalifa regime.

On May 11, Mohammed al-Jishi, Rajab’s lawyer, said the country’s criminal court has decided to extend the detention pending further investigation. The Bahrain Center for Human Rights also confirmed the news.

Rajab’s family says he was arrested on April 2 for posting comments on Twitter denouncing torture in a regime detention center where activists are held.

In May 15, 2015, Amnesty International called on Bahrain to “immediately” release Rajab.

Rajab, the director of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights and a co-founder of the [Persian] Gulf Center for Human Rights, has been critical of Manama’s heavy-handed crackdown on the peaceful anti-regime protests that erupted in the kingdom in 2011. He spent two years in prison from mid-2012 to mid-2014.

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