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Back Activities Alerts Alert: Bahrain: Government crackdown on thousands of mourners at funerals

Alert: Bahrain: Government crackdown on thousands of mourners at funerals

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Jawad Marhun Funeral

Regime’s security apparatus use teargas, rubber bullets and stun grenades to disperse gatherings.

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


1. Summary

Whilst gathering for the funeral of Jawad Marhun – a 36 year old citizen who died after being exposed to teargas shot through a window at his parent’s home – security forces fired rubber bullets, teargas and launched stun grenades at those engaged in the congregation. Reports have emerged of similar instances occurring elsewhere in the country.

We must act so that that the regime is unable to act with similar impunity and disregard for human dignity in the future.

2. Background

Jawad Marhun was 36 years old when the Bahraini regime’s Saudi sponsored security forces fired teargas into his parent’s home on 10 September, killing him. The regime has attempted to attribute his death to sickle cell disease – a disease that the Marhun family has confirmed that Jawad did not have.

Tens of thousands of Bahrainis gathered at Jawad’s funeral, both to remember him and to protest at the criminality and corruption of the regime’s security forces that led to his death. Many chanted slogans urging the country’s monarch, King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, to step down.

They were met by regime security forces that proceeded to fire rubber bullets at mourners and launched teargas and stun grenades onto those present at the gathering. Many were injured, and evidence has emerged from the Bahraini Centre for Human Rights of a similar incident occurring in the city of Demistan; where mourners of the slain Jaffar Hassan were mowed down in jeeps by policemen [1].

The Bahraini regime is becoming bolder and bolder in its flagrance of international law and human rights, assuming that it can get away with anything. We must act now in order to bring incidents like these to public scrutiny, and to show the regime that we are in solidarity with the Bahraini people and will not let them remain oppressed.

Notes:

[1] See:

Bahrain Centre for Human Rights, 'Jaffar Hassan dies after serious injuries and security forces attack mourners'.

3. Action Required

Write to the Bahraini Minister of Interior, Shaikh Rashid bin Abdullah bin Ahmad Al-Khalifa, as well as Foreign-Secretary William Hague, urging them to press for a full inquiry into these assaults on mourners and protesters. Campaigners are welcome to use their own writings in their letters, or use the sample letter provided below.

4. Sample letter
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A sample letter is 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 very important as it helps IHRC to monitor the situation with regards to our campaigns and to improve upon the current model letters. It is preferable that letters be sent via post, or otherwise by fax and/or email.

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a)    Bahraini Minister of Interior, Sheikh Rashid bin Abdullah bin Ahmad Al-Khalifa.

[Your name]
[Your address]

Minister of Interior
Sheikh Rashid bin Abdullah bin Ahmad Al-Khalifa
Ministry of Interior
P.O. Box 13, al-Manama, Bahrain
Fax: +973 17232661
[Date]

Your Excellency Shaikh Rashid bin ‘Abdullah bin Ahmad Al-Khalifa,,

Re: The violent crackdown of mourners and protesters at the funerals of Jawad Marhun and Jaffar Hassan.
I am writing to convey my utter shock at the manner with which mourners gathering to commemorate the loss of their innocent countrymen and women have been brutalised by security forces.

In the past few weeks, Jawad Marhun and Jaffar Hassan have both been killed by those doing your governments bidding –the Saudi sponsored security forces. Jawad was killed after inhaling teargas that was fired into his parent’s house, and Jaffar died after receiving severe beatings by policemen.

The fact that your security forces will not even let regular Bahrainis associate or congregate at a funeral is despicable, and it seems that they have been permitted to act with utter impunity when suppressing Bahrain’s cries for justice and respect for human rights.

You must ensure that your government will launch a full investigation into these events, and put a stop to the flagrant disregard for the rule of law and basic human dignity by your security forces.

Failure to do so will be yet another black mark on the human rights record of your country, and leave your regime in an even worse position when the upcoming elections result in widespread boycotts and a renewed demand for the end to the Khalifa monarchy.

I look forward to your swift reply regarding this urgent matter.

Yours sincerely,


[Your signature]
[Your name]

a) Minister of foreign affairs in your country. (UK campaigners can write using the address supplied below, fax: +44 (0)20 7839 2417 or email: private.office@fco.gov.uk)


[Your name]
[Your address]

Rt Hon. William Hague MP
Foreign & Commonwealth Office,
King Charles Street,
London,
SW1A 2AH,
United Kingdom.

[Date]

Dear Mr Hague,

Re: The violent crackdown of mourners and protesters at the funerals of Jawad Marhun and Jaffar Hassan in Bahrain.

I am writing to convey my utter shock at the manner with which mourners gathering to commemorate the loss of their innocent countrymen and women have been brutalised by security forces in Bahrain.

In the past few weeks, Jawad Marhun and Jaffar Hassan have both been killed by those doing your governments bidding – the Saudi sponsored security forces. Jawad was killed after inhaling teargas that was fired into his parent’s house, and Jaffar died after receiving severe beatings by policemen.

The fact that the Bahraini security forces will not even let its citizens associate or congregate at a funeral is despicable. It seems that they have been permitted to act with utter impunity when suppressing Bahrain’s cries for justice and respect for human rights.

As an enabler to the regime’s campaign of terror through arms sales and political support, your government now has a moral obligation to ensure that the Bahraini government will launch a full investigation into these events, and put an end to the flagrant disregard for the rule of law and basic human dignity by its security forces. If you do not, Britain’s rhetoric on human rights will continue to ring hollow throughout the Muslim world.

I look forward to your swift reply regarding this urgent matter.

Yours sincerely,


[Your signature]
[Your name]


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