On the morning of 20 March 2011, 60-year-old Younis Ashoori went to Muharraq Maternity Hospital as usual, where he worked as an administrator. Suffering from a migraine and pain from kidney stones, he decided to go home early. Amina, his wife, recalls that he arrived around 11:30 am. Shortly afterwards, he received a call from his boss asking him to come back as there was an urgent need for his assistance.
Despite his pain, Younis, a dedicated worker with nearly 30 years of public service, consented to his boss’s request. Saying goodbye to his wife, he drove back to the hospital.
Amina waited anxiously for her husband to return home, but he never did. He still hasn’t.
Upon his return to the hospital, he had been violently arrested. He was subsequently tortured and tried before a military court, where he was convicted of transporting oxygen to the site of a protest on 14 March and given a three-year sentence.
Younis is back in court tomorrow, with many hoping Wednesday’s appeal hearing will finally bring his freedom. Foremost among them are his wife Amina and their son Hamad. With Ramadan just days away, any further adjournment will likely keep Younis behind bars until at least September. “It's very difficult for someone to be away at Ramadan. It is a very special time for a family. His mother needs to see him. We need Younis home,” Amina says.