Nabeel Rajab, briefly released from prison, at his mother's funeral on 5 October
Nabeel Rajab, President of the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights, was in court on Tuesday to appeal his three-year sentence for organising and participating in protests, only to hear that the appeal is postponed to 8 November. One witness, Stéphanie David of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) was denied entry to Bahrain, and the judge refused the defence's request for the testimony on others on the grounds that this would not be "relevant".
In a statement, The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders said the appeal proceedings "blatantly violate[d] the rights of the defence" and called on "the Bahraini authorities to immediately and unconditionally release Mr. Rajab and to put an end to all acts of judicial harassment against him".
Last night, Nabeel's wife Sameera posted an account of the hearing:
(1) I'll tweet details of Nabeel Rajab's trial which was on (Oct 16) and I'll number tweets coz they'll be many and very important #Bahrain— SumayaRajab (@binmrajab) October 18, 2012
Representatives of American, French & German embassies, rep. of FIDH and some reporters and journalists attended the trial.
Nabeel surprised audience that he asked child Ibrahim al-Moqdad, present before Court to stand for everyone to see, especially foreigners.
Nabeel raised Ibrahim's hand,saying: Is this government ashamed to put an innocent child on political trial and his natural place is with his family.
Nabeel said he was left in the car in the heat for an hour & a half in the park and made him enter from the back door so no one says hi.
In Nabeel's trial there was very dangerous things done by court which exceeded all legal, professional and even ethical norms.
Initially the defense objected to include a paragraph in the previous trial's record which wasn't discussed which revealed to everyone the manipulation in the case's file behind the scenes.
Of course, the judge pretended he doesn't know anything and proved the request to correct the record made by the defense team.
2nd dangerous unprecedent is that the court hid (missed) CD given by the prosecution as evidence of conviction of Nabeel! Which later the CD condemned them and proved the innocence of Nabeel.
To hide the evidence which was used for the first conviction in court is a very dangerous thing, and proves the complicity of the court and systematic judicial manipulation in Nabeel Rajab's case.
The defense objected to the mysterious disappearance of this disk and asked the judge to open an investigation into this matter.
The judge repeated to the defense that he had not seen this disc and the defense insisted on his presence in the file. The defense insisted on it's presence in the file and disappearance now in order to hide evidence.
Audience and foreigners were surprised by the court, especially that FIDH rep. is a lawyer and knows seriousness of such a move.
Judge's insistence on not seeing the disc and pretending to be surprised, proved to everyone that regime will do anything to condemn Nabeel.
3rd dangerous unprecedent which revealed that Bahrain regime's ready to do anything to keep Nabeel jailed is refusing defense witnesses.
Judge surprised everyone (after leaving the deliberation room) he refused international appearance of witnesses asked by the defense!
Judge repeated that the decision to refuse witnesses is before entering the room to deny the charge of receiving orders in the room.
Surprise was big because having witnesses is a right and essential element of trials and the judge's decision destroys the foundations of trial.
Defense said that it's clear and without doubt, someone is manipulating in Nabeel's case and doesn't want Nabeel to defend himself.
The defense confirmed in the court that Nabeel's targeted by Bahrain's ruling family for his human rights activism and exposing violations.
The defense revealed that all signs and indicators confirm that Nabeel is targeted by the same institutions he criticized.
And the defense revealed the threat by Foreign Minister to Nabeel Rajab on Twitter and a copy of the threat was given to the judge.
The defense explained that the threat of Foreign Minister was followed by succession cases which proves that Nabeel's targeted.
Defense asked the judge re-evaluate the entire case file and focus on Bahrain ruling regime targeting Nabeel instead of small details.
Defense repeated its request of integrating issue of attack on Nabeel in Manama to the case file, judge ignored the request repeatedly.
The judge ignorance of all requests by the defense openly threatens the fundamental right of Nabeel Rajab in his own defense.
Judiciary went far beyond the issue of politicization & lack of independence, it became an important tool to support authoritarian rule.
It's now clear to all and even foreigners to continue in this judicial farce without international supervision is a waste of time and effort.
And I will continue later my tweets to reveal the rest of what happened at the trial of Human Rights Defender Nabeel Rajab... wait for further details