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Bahrain Live Coverage: Appearing Before the UN Human Rights Council

See also Bahrain Report: The Ongoing Assault on the Health System
Yemen, Syria (and Beyond) Live Coverage: A Suicide Bombing in Sana'a
Monday's Bahrain Live Coverage: The Regime's Strategy of Rolling Detention

1610 GMT: Some detail on detained hunger striker Abdulhadi Alkhawaja's appearance in court today, amidst 13 activists and political figures on an extended "retrial" of their lengthy prison sentences (see 1200 GMT)....

"The continuation of my arrest is a crime," Alkhawaja told the court. "Stop this sham trial."

Alkhawaja continued, "For more than 100 days I have been on hunger strike and am ready to sacrifice my life to demand freedom."

Alkhawaja's wife, Khadija Almousawi said her husband also told the court about the abuse to which he was subjected after detention in April 2011: "There was a moment of silence when he spoke about the psychological torture when they lied to him about arresting [their daughter] Zainab...torturing, raping Zainab and moving her to a jail in Saudi Arabia. This must have been harder than the torture itself."

1450 GMT: On 11 January 2012, Yousif Muwali went for a morning walk. His body was found in water two days later. Police said he drowned, but an independent autopsy has found that he was abused, including with electricity, before he died.

Activist Frankie Dolan has posted Yousif's story, in social media and pictures as told by his brother Yaser.

1200 GMT: Back from an academic break to find that 13 prominent activists and political figures have appeared in court for their "retrial".

The 13 are among 21 men who were sentenced --- eight of them to life in prison --- by a military tribunal last June. Fourteen of the defendants were imprisoned; the other seven were convicted in absentia.

Human rights activist Abdulhadi Alkhawaja, on Day 103 of his hunger strike, entered court in a wheelchair, accompanied by a doctor and two nurses. Observers said he looked frail but moved his chair without medical assistance.

There was no resolution in today's hearing, which adjourned to 29 May.

0710 GMT: On Monday, we featured the views of children, through their cartoons, of the situation in Bahrain. Today, we note another image, comparing the support of Arab and Bahraini officials the people of Syria with their attitudes towards those in Bahrain:

0510 GMT: On Monday, a court ordered that activist Zaiab Alkhawaja be held for another 72 hours pending trial on charges over her protests. At the same time, she was fined $530 for "insulting a police officer".

Alkhawaja was seized on 21 April while demonstrating in the middle of a Bahraini highway.

0455 GMT: John Horne starts Live Coverage with a look at Monday's United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, which began its Universal Periodic Review of the situation in Bahrain:

Many of the nations who spoke yesterday voiced serious human rights concerns, across a range of areas. In contrast, Bahrain's Minister of State for Human Rights Affairs told delegates that "the principles and culture of human rights" are "priorities" of the Kingdom.

The submission by the US State Department was notable for repeated concerns over a lack of "accountability" for those responsible for the violence and abuses of 2011. Specifically, the submission recommended, "Prosecute officials at all levels of responsibility who are implicated in abuse, torture or death of civilians during the period of unrest".

However, at the same time, the US appeared to scale back its call for the release of political prisoners convicted under military courts last year. In expressing concern for the "ongoing detention and trials of hundreds of those who participated in peaceful anti-government protests", "particular attention" is only drawn to 20 medics, sentenced last autumn to 5 to 15 years, and human rights activist Abdulhadi AlKhawaja, currently on Day 103 of his hunger strike.

The concluding session on Bahrain is to be held Friday.

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