UAE: Serious Abuses in al-Rezin prison
Tow rights groups have repororted today in tow seperate press statements serious human rights violations against prisoners of conscience arbitrarily held in al-Rezin prison.
ICJHR : New and serious human rights violations in Al-Razeen prison:
The International Centre for Justice and Human Rights (ICJHR) said that he has been informed that on Thursday 25 May 2017, the authorities of Al Razeen prison ordered Nepali guards to break into the prisoners’ wards at 2 am particularly, ward no. 7, where prisoners of conscience, political opponents, bloggers and human rights activists are detained, and asked them to take off all their clothes and cover their intimate body parts with only a towel.
The guards later ordered the detainees to stand facing the walls and touched all parts of their bodies while searching them in an insulting and degrading manner. Such action is a clear violation of the individuals’ right to privacy and to physical and moral integrity. Further, it is in breach of the inspection regulations of prisoners and their visitors stipulated in the Human Rights Committee document on the Right to Respect Privacy, Family, Home and Correspondence, and Protection of Honor and Reputation (CCPR General Comments No.16: Article 17) that “So far as personal and body search is concerned, effective measures should ensure that such searches are carried out in a manner consistent with the dignity of the person who is being searched”.
Such degrading search practiced by the prison guards used to be the cause pushing the human rights activist Amran Radwan to go on a hunger strike in protest against his humiliating and degrading search. The hunger strike caused him health problems including, hypoglycemia.
The Al Razeen Prison authorities have deliberately put the prisoners of conscience including political opponents, human rights activists and bloggers in solitary confinement without legitimate reasons in order to take revenge on them. The authorities also prevented them from family visits and prohibited them from having any newspaper, pen, paper, or even the Quran. Among the cases of solitary confinement, there is firstly, Abdul Aziz Hareb Al-Muhairi, who was held in solitary confinement for having a piece of paper that in fact the prison administration knew about it but never paid attention to before until they used it as a pretext to detain him in solitary confinement. Secondly, the cases of Khalid Fadl, Ahmed Saqr, Amran Radwan and Fouad Al Hammadi, who were also kept in solitary confinement which subsequently affected their psychological safety and caused them insomnia and disturbance, it is generally known that the prisoners’ health conditions deteriorate due to the solitary confinement according to Istanbul Declaration on the Use and Effects of solitary confinement 2007.
The detainees were also banned from giving lessons and Friday sermons, and anyone who disobeys this rule will be put in solitary confinement and prevented from family visit. This is indeed what happened to Amran Radwan who gave a speech during Friday’s sermon, to Ahmed Saqr who gave a lesson as well as to Khalid Fadl who presented a meditation following the afternoon (Asr) prayer that lasted 7 minutes. Such rule is in clear violation of the right to hold prayers in prison and to have religious books and religious education according to the provisions of the Federal Law No. 43 of 1992 on Regulating Penal Institutions and Chapter 41-1 of the UN Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners.
Arab Organisation for Human Rights in the UK (AOHR) strongly condemns human rights violations against prisoners in Al-Razeen prison:
The London-based AOHR-UK reported that political prisoners and activists held in al-Rezin prison were subjected to mistreatment and humiliation as well as rights violation during a night raid carried out by Nepali security guards.
The organisation pointed out that the detainees are still tortured and miss-treated in al-Rezin prison although being investigated, tried, and sentenced.
It also noted that a number of detainees declared an open hunger strike in protest against their difficult detention conditions and the ill-treatment they are subjected too.