Towards Justice in Bahrain: The UN Human Rights Council must ensure Bahrain is accountable for its human rights record

Geneva, Palais des Nations (United Nations), 19 September 2012


 
On the day of the adoption of Bahrain’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR) Report by the UN Human Rights Council, the Nonviolent Radical Party, Transnational and Transparty (NRPTT) and No Peace Without Justice, together with international and Bahraini partners, hosted a side event "Towards Justice for Bahrain" at the United Nations in Geneva. The meeting, which was attended by over one hundred people, provided an opportunity for activists on the ground in Bahrain to testify about the real situation the country is in, uncovering the truth in Bahrain and showing the real face of a campaign of repression to silence opposition and independent voices.
 
Statement by Niccolo’ Figa-Talamanca, Secretary General of No Peace Without Justice, from Geneva :
 
“As highlighted during this morning’s session of the UN Human Rights Council, the picture portrayed by the Bahraini authorities is at odds with what is really happening on the ground. The human rights situation in Bahrain has reached a crisis situation and is at risk of getting worse every day. It is also a worrying indication that the authorities in Bahrain are not serious about implementing the recommendations of either the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry (BICI) or of this Universal Periodic Review.
 
“Despite the pledges made by the King and the authorities in Bahrain since November 2011, the human rights situation in Bahrain has deteriorated. There have been severe restrictions on peaceful assembly and protests; ongoing use of lethal weapons such as gas and pellet shots; arbitrary arrests, unfair trials, torture and degrading treatments ; and increased repression against human rights organisations and activists. This was very clear during today’s side event; person after person spoke on these issues and what they are saying is becoming all too familiar a story to come out of Bahrain. Yet there was in the room also a tremendous sense of responsibility to do what is necessary, using nonviolent means, to reverse the situation and support and encourage Bahrain to become a democracy that protects the human rights of all people living within its borders. The optimism that it is still possible is what gives us hope that these brave human rights activists and defenders can make a real difference; they just need our unstinting support.
 
“The Nonviolent Radical Party, Transnational and Transparty (NRPTT) and No Peace Without Justice, together with other international and Bahraini partners, urge the UN Human Rights Council to act to halt this deteriorating situation and to adopt immediate and concrete measures to stop the violations. We therefore call on the Human Rights Council to appoint an envoy of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and a special rapporteur of the HRC; and to schedule without delay a special session of the HRC on Bahrain.
 
“We urge the UN Human Rights Council HRC to take these concrete steps to make Bahrain accountable and to abide by its own obligations, HRC rules and international conventions and norms.”    
 

  • Flyer of the event held on 19 September 2012, from 2 pm to 4 pm, Room 16, Palais des Nations (UN), Geneva
  • Statement by the Nonviolent Radical Party, Transnational and Transparty, delivered at the 21st Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council
  • Joint Statement signed by Bahrain Human Rights Organisation, together with Americans for Democracy and Human Rights in Bahrain,  Bahrain Human Rights Society, Bahrain Rehabilitation and Anti-Violence Organisation (BRAVO), Bahrain Youth Society for Human Rights, CIVICUS, Nonviolent Radical Party, Transnational and Transparty, No Peace Without Justice, Redress Trust, Reporters Without Borders

 
For further information, please contact: Alessandro Manno on amanno@npwj.org or +32 494 533 923 or Nicola Giovannini on ngiovannini@npwj.org or +32 2 548 39 15.