SHAFAQNA – Bahrain Campaign, which has worked to manifest political and institutional reforms in Bahrain in view of empowering the people of Bahrain wrote an open letter to President Obama, hoping to reach out to the American leader and plead the case of democracy.
Although Bahrainis have been exposed to one of the most brutal and systematic crackdown, the international community, and most especially the US have remained blind and deaf to the people’s cries for freedom and democracy.
Rather than side with the people and exert pressure on the monarchy in Bahrain, western powers have instead worked to undermine protesters in order to reaffirm their ally – King Hamad Al Khalifa, as the main authority figure in the kingdom island.
Following in the letter:
The President of the United States of America Mr. Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
16 April 2015
Dear Mr. President
As you are preparing for a meeting with the Gulf Arab rulers at Camp David, we are writing to urge you to include and cover the political and human rights issues in your talks.
As we understand, the purpose of this meeting is to discuss the “ongoing cooperation to raise common interests, related to the security of the Gulf region and other issues”, yet it is still of paramount importance to consider the political and human rights situation in the Gulf region and its wider repercussions. We believe it sits in the heart of any planned action for stability, security and mutual interests.
The serious political and human rights situation in the region needs to be properly and principally addressed, especially in countries like Bahrain and Saudi Arabia where indifferences and transgressions in the human rights and political fields have led to further potential dangers to the security of the region and an absence of participation of the peoples there. A sobering example of this is the Jaw Prison crisis in Bahrain where over a thousand prisoners were tortured, leading to mortal and serious injuries, in a brazen act of revenge by the Bahraini authorities against political opponents. This confirms the political decay that is resulting in the disregard for human rights in Bahrain, with human rights abusers having clearance to carry out such atrocities.
As a world leading power, the US could have positive influences to stabilize the region. We urge you to utilize this meeting to push for real and functional change, to ultimately change the current political landscape and transform it to be democratic.
Accordingly, we would like to take this opportunity to bring to your attention the following recommendations regarding freedoms and political aspiration of change for Bahrain, and hope you will consider them with your full scrutiny and open mind.
The people of Bahrain are endeavoring for the following:
- Assembling a National Assembly to draft a constitution that paves the way for a democratic system, whereby the people are the source of all the powers. This should then lead to the following:
- Presenting political officials that caused human rights abuses to a just and independent judiciary.
- An elected government representing the will of the people.
- Fair electoral districts guaranteeing political equality amongst the people and meeting the universal principle of one person, one vote.
- A parliament comprising of a single chamber having sole legislative and regulatory powers.
- A trustworthy judicial system independent from the executive branch both financially and administratively.
- Security for all, with the formation of a representative army and security apparatus that respects human rights.
Looking forward to seeing you address the above points with assurance of following them up with the Gulf rulers.