Bahraini Medics Trial Halted with Fewer than Half of Witnesses Allowed to Testify

Washington, DC — Eighteen of 20 Bahraini medics who were sentenced to 5 to 15 years in prison after a military trial finished their latest court appearance today. Human Rights First’s Brian Dooley, who has been in Bahrain for the past week, concluded his trip today by monitoring the trial. The series of witnesses testifying in defense of the medics made the government case appear even less tenable. Though only fewer than half of the medic’s witnesses were allowed to testify. The judge halted the proceedings shortly after 7:30 p.m. “The hearing was adjourned until Tuesday, but it appears the defendants will not be able to call any more witnesses to testify in person. These charges should have never been brought and should now be immediately dropped,” said Dooley. Rula Al Saffar, a Bahraini nurse sentenced to 15 years for providing medical treatment to democracy protesters last spring, told Human Rights First, “It is solely unfair that we were not allowed to call our remaining witnesses, and the judge prevented those witnesses that he did hear from raising the issue of our torture in custody.” For more information on the trials or to speak with Dooley, please contact Brenda Bowser Soder at [email protected]<mailto:[email protected]> or 202-370-3323.

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Published on March 15, 2012

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