Bahrain’s SIU Received 28 Complaints Including 18 Allegations of Torture

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SHAFAQNA – The member of the Special Investigation Unit, Ibrahim Al-Kuwari, said the unit received last April 28 complaints, 18 of them were on allegations of torture and nine on allegations of maltreatment, while one was on allegations of using excessive force by the public security forces into which an official investigation had been launched.

Within the same context, Al-Kuwari indicated that the unit had questioned 52 witnesses and interrogated 29 accused of the public security forces. Meanwhile, eight of the defendants were examined by the special forensic physician affiliated to the unit to indicate their injuries and their date and how these injuries happened, in case if any was found.

He added, “In the light of following the unit’s cases, the court of cassation challenged the verdict of the supreme court of appeal regarding commuting the sentence of 2 members of the public security forces in the death case of the defendant Isa Ibrahim Saqr (28 April 2011) from 10 years in Dry Dock Prison to 2 years, through challenging the verdict and referring the case to the supreme court of appeal before another district (the fifth one) to arbitrate again.”

He continued, “The unit is now examining the grounds of the verdict issued against the defendant in the death case of Fadhel Abbass and the injury of another in the incident, on 8 January 2014, that acquitted him from the murder and imprisoned him 3 months over assaulting a bodily integrity to evaluate the possibility of challenging the verdict legally.”

“On the other hand, in the frame work of the unit’s investigations in the murder of Hassan Jassim Makki that happened in the Dry Dock Prison on 3 April 2011, the unit nominated a medical committee to detect whether there was a medical mistake that led to his death. The committee excluded the presence of a medical mistake and suggested several recommendations related to the technical equipment that have to be found in the clinic of the public security forces and the courses the nurses have to undergo. The ministry of interior recommended that the unit supply all the needed equipment and that those working in nursing and clinics affiliated to public security forces undergo technical courses. Besides, the unit continues to follow the implementation of the recommendations in this regard,” he said.

The special investigating unit emphasized that in the context of completing the work linked to the convention between the unit and UN concerning developing the capabilities of the unit members, Shakeeb Al-Darwish, the Tunisian media expert, visited Bahrain last month to contribute in scheming a media strategy to the unit. He also visited a number of media and human rights parties to examine the media and human rights work flow in Bahrain, including BNA, the security media in the ministry of interior, the general secretary ombudsman and national human rights institution

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