Bahrain

Bahraini activist marks 62nd birthday behind bars

The international network Scholars at Risk (SAR) reiterated calls for the release of Bahraini scholar and activist Khalil al-Halwachi as the latter marked his 62nd birthday behind bars.

In a Twitter post on Thursday, SAR wrote that the activist was spending his birthday in prison “instead of with his family, all for his peaceful activism.”

The group has repeatedly called on all those concerned to take action by sending letters, emails, and faxes to the appropriate authorities in Manama, urging them to free Al-Halwachi.

In May of this year, Manama’s top court upheld Al-Halwachi’s 10-year prison sentence.

He was convicted on allegedly weapons possession charges and “insulting the judiciary”.

The activist maintains that the evidence in his case was fabricated and that he was prosecuted in retaliation for his peaceful activism.

According to SAR, Al-Halwachi “has been denied access to medical care despite several medical complications, including blood clots, from a stroke he suffered in September 2016, and a hernia.”

“Professor Al-Halwachi has been intermittently held in solitary confinement and reported unsanitary conditions, overcrowding, among other forms of ill-treatment,” the group added.

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