BPA: Bahraini Gov't Carries Out Arbitrary Arrests, Investigations against Activists Coinciding with IPU Assembly
2023-03-11 - 6:38 p
Bahrain Mirror: The Bahrain Press Association (BPA) condemned the authorities' arrest of 4 citizens who are active on social media outlets, including lawyer Ibrahim Al-Mannai, Kassim Al-Hujairi, Ali Hassan and Ibrahim Khalil, coinciding with the 146th Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) General Assembly in Manama.
BPA said in a statement that these arrests, which coincide with the IPU convening in Manama until March 15, 2023, under the title of "Promoting peaceful coexistence and inclusive societies: Fighting intolerance," "represent the picture of policy of confiscating freedom of opinion, expression and media freedoms."
The association denounced the refusal of the Bahraini authorities to allow two delegates from Human Rights Organization, which holds the status of censorship within the Union, to enter the country, and the withdrawal of their visas that had been granted to them, over calls launched by Human Rights Watch and other human rights organization to the IPU to "shed light on human rights file in Bahrain, including restricting freedom of opinion and expression."
It denounced "these arbitrary measures", considering them "a continuation of an arbitrary approach against media freedoms in the country that began in 2011 and is still ongoing," noting that "the current measures carried out by the security authorities in Bahrain fundamentally contradict the lofty message adopted by the IPU, which motto is "For Democracy. For everyone".
BPA called on participants in the IPU conference to "raise this file and urge the Bahraini government to develop real and radical solutions to the human rights file, which suffers from a clear defect and continuous violations."
The Bahrain Press Association also renewed its call to the Bahraini government to "make cybercrime directorate stop its harassments against Bahrainis, and stop prosecuting journalists and civil society activists by allowing citizens to express their opinions without being subject to legal prosecution."
BPA hoped that "the Bahraini government sees through this conference the true meaning of coexistence, tolerance and democracy," and that "it works to consolidate them in the Bahraini society more effectively and seriously, beyond political propaganda."