By an absolute majority, the European Parliament approved an urgent draft resolution condemning human rights violations in Bahrain and demanding the immediate and unconditional release of political prisoners languishing in prisons.
The draft resolution, which was approved by 316 deputies out of 360, called for the immediate and unconditional release of all human rights defenders and prisoners of conscience, including the Danish-Bahraini citizen Abdulhadi Al-Khawaja, in addition to Naji Fateel, Abdulwahab Hussain, Ali Haji, and Sheikh Ali Salman. and Hassan Mushaima, who were detained and sentenced for exercising their right to freedom of expression.
The European Parliament condemned the recent judicial rulings against prominent human rights activist Abdulhadi Al-Khawaja, after he was convicted in two separate cases, related to his protest against ill-treatment in Jaw Central Prison, and fined in two cases on November 28, following an unfair trial.
The EU resolution pointed out that Al-Khawaja and other political detainees suffer from deliberate medical negligence in prisons, and are targeted by the Bahraini authorities for their human rights and political activities.
It called on the Bahraini authorities to return the Bahraini citizenship to nearly 300 individuals, expressing deep concern about their continued violation and restriction of the right of individuals to peaceful protest, freedom of expression, and freedom online and offline.
The European Parliament urged Bahrain to ensure a safe space for civil society organisations and independent media, and to guarantee the exercise of the right to freedom of expression. The EU condemned the repeated use of so-called “anti-terrorism” laws to limit freedom of expression.
It pointed out that the Bahraini authorities used the Israeli “Pegasus” electronic spyware to hack the mobile phones of dissidents, journalists, political opposition leaders, and diplomats.
It confirmed the death sentences issued against 26 activists, who are facing imminent execution, and it urged the Bahraini authorities to stop the execution of their death penalty.
The European Parliament condemned the failure of the Bahraini authorities to conduct an investigation into the allegations of torture and other cruel treatment against those sentenced to death, “Mohammed Ramadan and Hussein Mousa”, calling for a re-trial that conforms to international fair trial standards and is not based on evidence obtained under torture.
It called on the Government of Bahrain to cooperate fully with United Nations bodies, to invite all special rapporteurs of the United Nations Human Rights Council to visit Bahrain and to allow European Union officials, independent observers and human rights groups to visit prisons, to abide by its obligations and duties under the United Nations Convention against Torture, and to ratify on the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture.
Parliament recommended the European Union to ban the export and sale of any form of security equipment to Bahrain, nor to update or provide maintenance for it as it could be used for internal repression.