ALERT UPDATE: Cehl Fakeermeeah, Prisoner of Faith, Mauritius

Islamic Human Rights Commission

17 February 2003


Prisoner of Faith: Cehl Fakeermeeah has recently been subjected to a 24-hour lock-up regime, wholly incompatible with his remand status, with restriction of cell air ventilation and continued denial of basic facilities. Also, he is still being denied bail.

Popular Muslim politician and opposition leader, Cehl Fakeermeeah was arrested in Dec. 2000 on dubious allegations of involvement in the murder of three Mauritian Militant Movement members, aimed at stifling his popularity amongst Mauritius’ Muslim electorate.

In May 2001, IHRC reported the torture Fakeermeeah had received whilst in detention as well as the catalogue of human rights abuses within the criminal justice system in the Republic of Mauritius. IHRC has received information that Cehl Fakeermeeah has been subjected to a new regime of 24-hour lock ups, the violation of lawyer confidentiality through the placing of bugging devices in Fakeermeah’s cell, the interception of private communications, intimidation of Fakeermeeah’s family during prison visits and the continued denial of basic and religious provisions. IHRC also expresses continuing concern at government attempts to prejudice Fakeermeeah’s trial.

Suggested Action

Please write to the following expressing your despondence at the way the situation is being handled. Remind the Mauritian Ambassador that yet again the Mauritian authorities have yet again violated Fakeermeeah’s constitutional and human rights, demanding that:

(a) Cehel Fakeermeeah has his full rights re-instated and accorded fair and proper treatment, with the immediate lifting of the 24-hour lock-up imposition, improvement of cell conditions and the provision of basic facilities
(b) He is immediately and unconditionally granted bail or released from imprisonment.

HE Mr Mohunlall Goburdun
Mauritian Embassy
32-33, Elvaston Place
London SW7 5NW

Fax: (44) 207 823-8437

Please also send letters to the following stating the Mauritian authorities’ lack of respect of human rights and urging them to apply pressure on Mauritius to free Cehel Fakeermeeah and other prisoners of faith.

Mr Sergio de Mello
UN High Commissioner on Human Rights
8-14 Avenue de la Paris
1211 Geneva 10

Mr Jack Straw MP
Foreign & Commonwealth Office
King Charles Street
Fax No: 020 7270 3539

Commissioner Chris Patten
European Commission
Directorate General for External Relations
200 Rue de la Loi
B-1049 Brussels

PO Box 598, Wembley, HA9 7XH, United Kingdom
Telephone (+44) 181 902 0888 Fax (+44) 181 902 0889