URGENT ALERT: Bahrain – Haq Movement representative Dr Abdul Jalil Al-Singace arrested

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Three prominent human rights activists from the opposition have been arrested in the early hours of the morning of 26 January 2009.

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Islamic Human Rights Commission
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27 January 2009

URGENT ALERT: Bahrain – Haq Movement representative Dr Abdul Jalil Al-Singace arrested

Contents
1. Summary
2. Background
3. Action required
4. Sample letters


1. Summary

Dr Abdul Jalil Al-Singace and two prominent leaders of Haq movement, including Secretary General, Hassna Mushaime', were arrested on 26 January 2009. They have been charged with conspiring to overthrow the regime.

These political activists are law-abiding citizens, actively promoting human rights in Bahrain. IHRC has close links with Dr Al-Singace and Haq Movement and is involved in their campaigns against injustice in Bahrain. IHRC urges all campaigners to write to the authorities mentioned in this alert and appeal for the immediate release of Dr Al-Singace and the other representatives of Haq Movement.


2. Background

Three prominent human rights activists from the opposition have been arrested in the early hours of the morning of 26 January 2009. Mr Hassna Mushaime', the Secretary General of Haq Movement, Sheikh Mohammad Habib Al Miqdad, a prominent religious figure and public orator and Dr Abdul Jalil Al-Singace, a university lecturer were taken into custody after their houses were raided around 3:00 am (local time) by police forces. The main doors were smashed open and women were reportedly attacked and children were terrorized.

These Haq movement representatives were reportedly arrested after they refused a summons for investigation by the Public Prosecution on Sunday, 25 January 2009. Reports state that the three men did not appear before investigators because the prosecution order failed to specify the reasons for the summons or charges against them.

After arrest, Mushaime was questioned for eight hours whereas Al-Miqdad and Al-Singace were questioned for three hours, in the presence of their legal representatives. Reports state that, according to their lawyers, the questions focussed on their link to an alleged terror plot and on their speeches against the regime and its policies.

According to reports, early today, 27 January 2009, Bahraini authorities charged these political activists with conspiring to overthrow the regime.

In view of the ever-increasing reports about Bahraini authorities torturing political detainees, IHRC fears that Al-Singace and others will face physical abuse at the hands of the police as well.

These serious developments in Bahrain have plunged the country further in political turmoil, as widespread clashes are reported between supporters and police forces following the arrests. Over the past few years as Sheikh Hamad bin Isa Al-Khalifa, ruler of Bahrain since 1971, insists on his autocratic policies in the country, public discontentment with the regime has rapidly increased.

IHRC has close links with Dr Al-Singace and the Haq Movement and is actively working with them to eradicate human rights violations in Bahrain. IHRC urges all campaigners to write to the following authorities and appeal for the immediate release of Dr Al-Singace and the other representatives of Haq Movement.


3. Action required
a) Write to the minister of foreign affairs in your country, urging him/her to raise this issue with his/her Bahraini counterpart.

UK campaigners can write to:

Rt. Hon. David Miliband MP
Foreign & Commonwealth Office
King Charles Street
London
SW1A 2AH

Email: private.office@fco.gov.uk

b) Write to the Bahraini ambassador in your country.

UK campaigners can write to:

HE Shaikh Khalifa bin Ali Al Khalifa
30 Belgrave Square
London, SW1X 8QB

Fax: +44 020 7201 9183
Email: information@bahrainembassy.co.uk


4. Sample letters
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Sample letters are given below for your convenience. Please note that model letters can be sent directly or adjusted as necessary to include further details. If you receive a reply to the letter you send, we request you to send a copy of the letter you sent and the reply you received to IHRC. This is extremely important as it helps IHRC to monitor the situation with regards to our campaigns and to improve upon the current model letters.

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Sample letter to minister for foreign affairs in your country (UK campaigners can use the address supplied)

[Your name]
[Your address]


[Date]

Rt. Hon. David Miliband MP
Foreign & Commonwealth Office
King Charles Street
London
SW1A 2AH

Dear Mr. Miliband,

Re: Bahrain - Human rights activists belonging to Haq movement arrested

I am deeply worried at the recent news about the arrest of three prominent political figures in Bahrain, belonging to the opposition, who were arrested in pre-dawn raids on 26 January 2009.

Mr Hassna Mushaime', Secretary General of the Haq Movement, Sheikh Mohammad Habib Al Miqdad, a prominent religious figure and public orator and Dr Abdul Jalil Al-Singace, a university lecturer were taken into custody after police forces broke into their houses, smashing the main doors. Reports state that the police attacked their women and terrorised their children.

On 27 January 2009, Bahraini authorities charged these political activists with conspiring to overthrow the regime.

In view of the ever-increasing reports about Bahraini authorities torturing political detainees, I fear that Dr Al-Singace and others will face physical abuse at the hands of the police as well.

Dr Al-Singace and his detained colleagues are well-known political activists, diligently promoting human rights in their country and working with international human rights organisations to battle injustice in Bahrain.

I urge you to pressurise the Bahraini authorities to immediately release them and to allow citizens their right to freedom of expression and association in the country.

I look forward to your response on this urgent matter.


Yours sincerely,


[Your signature]
[Your name]

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Sample letter to Bahraini ambassador in your country (UK campaigners can use the address supplied)


[Your name]
[Your address]


[Date]

HE Shaikh Khalifa bin Abdullah bin Mohammed Al Khalifa
30 Belgrave Square
London, SW1X 8QB

Your Excellency,

Re: Bahrain - Human rights activists belonging to Haq movement arrested

I am deeply worried at the recent news about the arrest of three prominent political figures in Bahrain, belonging to the opposition, who were arrested in pre-dawn raids on 26 January 2009.

Mr Hassna Mushaime', Secretary General of the Haq Movement, Sheikh Mohammad Habib Al Miqdad, a prominent religious figure and public orator and Dr Abdul Jalil Al-Singace, a university lecturer were taken into custody after police forces broke into their houses, smashing the main doors. Reports state that the police attacked their women and terrorised their children.

On 27 January 2009, Bahraini authorities charged these political activists with conspiring to overthrow the regime.

In view of the ever-increasing reports about political detainees being tortured in Bahrain, I fear that Dr Al-Singace and others will face physical abuse at the hands of the police as well.

Dr Al-Singace and his detained colleagues are well-known political activists, diligently promoting human rights in Bahrain and working with international human rights organisations to battle injustice in country.

I urge you to immediately release them and to allow the political opposition their right to freedom of expression and association in the country.

I look forward to your response on this urgent matter.


Yours sincerely,


[Your signature]
[Your name]


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Holy Qur'an: Chapter 4, Verse 75

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