Member of Salam for Democracy andHuman Rights, Ibtisam Al-Sayegh, confirmed that Bahrain has failed to implementthe UPR recommendations for 2008 and 2012, which resulted in 176recommendations (Bahrain accepted 156 of them).
During her participation in theSixth International Conference of the BFHR entitled “The InternationalCommunity and Challenges of Human Rights Reform in Bahrain”, Al-Sayegh statedthat these recommendations have not been implemented on the ground in practice,and that the human rights situation is more deteriorated than it was before submittingthe report of the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry, although the governmentof Bahrain claims to have implemented more than 90% of the UPR recommendations.
Salam for Democracy and Human Rightssaid that the government of Bahrain has taken a series of repressive andrestrictive measures, which are unprecedented since the suppression ofdemonstrations in 2011, through restricting the right to freedom of expressionand of assembly and implementing new restrictive regulations. In addition, therehas been a significant increase in the number of arbitrary arrests targeting humanrights defenders, activists, religious and political figures, and members ofcivil society associations.
It also pointed out thediscrimination against Shiite citizens, in particular, the targeting ofAyatollah Sheikh Isa Ahmed Qassim, whose nationality was revoked on June 20,and the summoning of more than 50 prominent Shiite clerics on the pretext ofillegal gathering, preaching without permission, or inciting hatred against thegovernment. Many clerics such as Sayed Majid al-Masha’al, Sheikh Muhammadal-Mansi, Sheikh Ali Humaidan and others were sentenced to prison terms. Inaddition, opposition leader, Sheikh Ali Salman, and prominent human rightsdefender, Nabeel Rajab, were arrested, and Al-Wefaq Society was dissolved inanother campaign against the national associations of the civil society.
The organization made severalrecommendations to the Bahraini authorities and the Member States of the HumanRights Council, as follows:
To the government of Bahrain:
1. Renew its international humanrights commitments.
2. Establish appropriate timetablesfor the full implementation of the recommendations of the Bahrain IndependentCommission of Inquiry of 2011
3. Fully implement therecommendations of the 2012 UPR of the Human Rights Council.
4. Immediately release all prisonersof conscience, including activists, political dissidents, and those who weredetained solely for exercising their fundamental rights to freedom of expressionand assembly
5. Lift restrictions on freedom ofmovement, including the travel bans imposed on some religious leaders, humanrights defenders and politicians.
6. Stop using the legislations whichrestrict public freedoms in order to strip citizens of their nationalities andforcibly deport them from the country.
7. Stop executions of dissidents andhuman rights activists.
8. Review local laws and practicesto ensure compliance with Bahrain\'s commitments to international human rightslaws and treaties.
9. Invite the United Nations SpecialProcedures to visit Bahrain.
10. Amend any article of the PenalCode that may be used to try individuals for exercising the right to freedom ofexpression or peaceful assembly, and bring laws into line with theinternational standards of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and theInternational Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
11. Make every effort to easecensorship and give the opposition and all civil society organizations thepossibility of establishing their own media.
12. Engage in dialogue with allrelevant parties to resolve conflicts and avoid violence.
To the Member States of the HumanRights Council:
1. Comprehensive review during the2017 UPR, particularly on issues such as consulting civil society organizationsand protecting human rights defenders in Bahrain
2. Continue the support andencouragement, and pressure the government of Bahrain to ensure theimplementation of the legislative amendments and the policies which guaranteegenuine promotion and protection of all human rights of all members of society,and hold the Bahraini government fully accountable if this is not achieved in arapid manner.