Emirati security authorities stopped Dr Amer Al-Shava, a Turkish academic and businessman of Palestinian origin, when he arrived at Dubai airport on October 2, 2014. He had travelled to Dubai several times, this time to attend his nephew’s wedding. His family had arrived the day before him and were expecting him to arrive at their hotel, but when they hadn’t heard from him, they went to the airport to ask about his whereabouts.
According to his wife, Emirati airport security authorities refused to cooperate and gave her several excuses regarding her husband’s disappearance. Finally after her insistence, she was told to file a missing persons report. It wasn’t until the next day, after going through the missing persons report procedures and being sent back to the airport, accompanied by officials from the Turkish consulate in Dubai, she was told that he was detained by the National Security Agency. They were told that he was transferred to Abu Dhabi.
Although Al-Shava’s wife exhausted all of her options and contacted all the international parties that may help, the Emirati authorities have not cooperated. Al-Shava was denied his rights to legal representation, family visitation, and was only allowed to call his family once on October 14th, 12 days after his disappearance and for only a few minutes during which he told his wife he was being treated well and that he would be released soon, as he was being held for formalities. However, his wife expressed her concern, as he did not seem to be himself and seemed to have been told what to say.
Dr Amer Al-Shava’s whereabouts, condition, and the reason for his detention remain unknown, despite being detained for over two and a half months. No charges have been made against him.
The Emirates Centre for Human Rights (ECHR) considers these actions to be a violation of Dr Al-Shava’s rights in accordance with the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance, which states that no one, under any circumstance, shall be subjected to enforced disappearance.
The ECHR calls on the Emirati authorities to:
1. Immediately disclose the whereabouts of Dr Amer Al-Shava and release him unconditionally.
2. Allow Dr Al-Shava access to legal representation and his family.
3. End all arbitrary arrests and forced disappearances which are a clear violation of international laws.
4. Investigate the circumstances of Dr Al-Shava’s disappearance and hold those involved accountable.
For further information please contact Lara Adam on +44(0) 7473773136 or at email@example.com.