Report: The truth about Geneva conference Reviewed by Momizat on . The civil society delegation in Geneva: “3 months to review the case of Bahrain and we have to document more” She also stressed that being peaceful is a key str The civil society delegation in Geneva: “3 months to review the case of Bahrain and we have to document more” She also stressed that being peaceful is a key str Rating:
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Report: The truth about Geneva conference

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The civil society delegation in Geneva: “3 months to review the case of Bahrain and we have to document more”

She also stressed that being peaceful is a key strength to be held onto, saying, “The patience and determination of the people of Bahrain has impressed the world and become a source of inspiration for all human rights activists. We should all continue in this same way until out demands are answered.”

Report from the opposition massive gathering “The Truth about Geneva Conference”

Opposition members and civil society representatives who participated in the UN Human Rights Council session on Bahrain have called to document all violations committed by the authorities, during the 3-month period that marks the next review of Bahrain in September.

Last Monday at the Freedom Square, west of Manama, a massive sit-in was organised by the opposition parties, entitled “The Truth about the Geneva Conference.” It discussed what happened at the review hearing of Bahrain’s human rights record, “the authorities report was exposed by the other reports of the international human rights organisations, and those are the reports that the world deems credible,” told Sayed Hadi Almusawi, head of the Liberties and Human Rights Department of Al Wefaq.

Mr. Almusawi attributed the victory in Geneva over the authorities and the worldwide criticism they received to the fact that they fought against both the people and God in demolishing mosques. He said, “We won because our martyrs gave their most precious contribution and are now beside Allah, we won because our prisoners are still held with fabricated sentences, just because they demanded pride and dignity. We won because you are a nation that does not hide the injustice that falls on it, and you demonstrated to the world all the violations you were exposed to and documented them so the world heard them before the government could deny them.”

He also emphasized “the Bahraini people have exercised their political rights since 14th February 2011 and since the government failed to grant those rights it violated them further through killing us, firing people from their jobs, stealing and torture. It’s crackdown failed.” Mr. Almusawi also stressed, “a security answer to this crisis will never work and we will return to achieve our demands and victory comes from God.”

He added that the Minister of Human Rights, who represented the authorities in Geneva, spoke about issues that were far away from what the international community wanted to hear. He talked about education but never spoke about the dismissed teachers and students, he spoke about the health sector but failed to mention the wounded or the targeted doctors and nurses.

Finally, Mr. Almusawi thanked the international support from Belgium and Italy, as well as the other international organisations such as IFEX, Pen International, Cairo Institute, Amnesty International and many others. All those organisations and communities were seeking to provide services to all members of the civil rights delegation and to defend the case of Bahraini’s and their rights.

Following on Dr. Nada Dhaif, a member of the civil society delegation in Geneva, said, “The Human Rights Council session witnessed a struggle between rights, democracy and truth.” She also pointed out that a senior UN officer confirmed that the movement in Bahrain is one of the highest in the Arab Spring and that the voice of Bahrainis is the highest as a result of it’s commitment to peaceful means. Dr. Nada also added that many human rights activists stressed on the need for a continuation of this peaceful approach as it helps them to give us even stronger support.

Next to speak was Dr. Monther Alkhor who was also one of the civil society delegates. The authorities delegation consisted of 40 members, whilst the civil society was no more than 15.

Dr. Monther emphasized that the authorities distributed material that was meant to prove the movement as violent and terrorists. He said, “We noticed that even the governments delegation observed that we were the most active at the UPR. He also added that the results of the UPR session prove that Bahraini civil society has become an important player in the human rights reviews with respect from others. He noted that those member states who were positive towards the Bahrain regime were repressive states and those countries that respect their people all condemned the practices of the Bahrain regime.

Professor Isa Alghayeb, Deputy Secretary General of the Bahrain Human Rights Society, denied any participation of NGOs in preparing the documents presented by the authorities. He said, “We as human rights organisations confirm that we were not involved in drafting the government report and therefore this report represents only the government and not the country as a whole.” Mr. Alghayeb pointed out that human rights organisations have submitted 19 reports about the situation in Bahrain and that Bahrain was the only country to delay it’s recommendations until September. He continued, “There will be parallel sessions and conferences for the civil societies organisations to deliver their voices and we have from now until September to follow this up.

Journalist Faisal Hayat, recently released from prison, said, “I attended Geneva as a victim and a spokesperson for the case of the athletes. As for the allegation by the government that there are no political prisoners in Bahrain and that no journalists were arrested, I am living proof that this is false.”

Mr. Hayat also mentioned a number of athletes who are still under the military court sentences. The Olympics are due soon and we have to shed light on the injustice of those athletes.

Jalila Al Salman, Vice-President of Bahrain Teachers Association, mentioned how shocked and surprised attendees in Geneva were when they heard of the violations in Bahrain.

Mrs. Al Salman described her involvement in the UPR not as an honour but an obligation towards the people of Bahrain. She said, “The injustice that has happened to the people of Bahrain speaks for itself, and list of recommendations by the council was a clear indication of the massive injustice faced by the people.

Mrs. Al Salman mentioned that she was representing the education sector to display the wide violations against this sector since 14th February 2011. Her presentation included the violations against teachers and students and urged everyone to document all violations through internal and external organisations.

She also stressed that being peaceful is a key strength to be held onto, saying, “The patience and determination of the people of Bahrain has impressed the world and become a source of inspiration for all human rights activists. We should all continue in this same way until out demands are answered.”

Lawyer Mohammed Altajer participated in the delegation as a lawyer and human rights activist, as well as a victim who was arrested and tortured during 2011.

Mr. Altajer described the mechanism of the UPR, that 3 reports are submitted, from the government, from civil society and from the Human Rights Commission.

Altajer continued, “What motivated us to participate in Geneva was those who are responsible for torture and violations and their continuation in violating the rights of the Bahraini people.” He also stressed that the Bahraini governments report comprised of empty promises that are no longer suitable to be used in international human rights forums.

He said, “International human rights organisations seek to document all violations from human rights defenders and victims, and their reports were published before our visit to Geneva to show the truth.

Dr. Alaa Shehabi, who also attended the UPR, explained in English her participation at the Human Rights Council in Geneva on 21st May 2011.

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