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Entries in Nabeel Rajab (87)


Bahrain Analysis: "Washington's Knight" --- The Crown Prince Gets US Weapons

Crown Prince Salman and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton

This was not the King receiving the US gesture of the arms sale; this was not the Minister of Defence, who had publicly declared that the Obama Administration is trying to undermine the regime.

This was the Crown Prince, the man repeatedly framed as the "moderate" among hard-liners, being anointed with the weapons. This is Washington's knight to bring stability and "reform", whatever that word means.

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Bahrain Live Coverage: Is the Regime Fostering Sectarian Conflict?

See also Bahrain Special: How Regime Supporters Used a New York Times Reporter (Again) To Denounce the Opposition
Bahrain/Egypt Video & Transcript: Nabeel Rajab and Alaa Abd-El Fattah with Julian Assange
Syria (and Beyond) Live Coverage: "Last Chance to Avoid Civil War"?
Tuesday's Bahrain Live Coverage: Countering the Regime's Allegations Against Nabeel Rajab

0851 GMT: Wafi Al-Majed, husband of detained activist Zainab Alkhawaja, updates on her case after a brief court hearing this morning:

0529 GMT: Amnesty International has declared Nabeel Rajab, the director of the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights, a "prisoner of conscience". It called for his immediate release after his arrest last Saturday at Bahrain's international airport.

Prosecutors have claimed that Rajab fomented violence through social media. His lawyer said about eight insulting tweets were mentioned in a court hearing on Sunday, which gave Rajab a seven-day detention order.

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Bahrain/Egypt Video & Transcript: Nabeel Rajab and Alaa Abd-El Fattah with Julian Assange

Alaa Abd-El Fattah is a prominent Egyptian activist and blogger. Imprisoned in 2006 for 45 days by the Mubarak regime, he was also detained for more than two months by Egypt's military rulers at the end of 2011.

Nabeel Rajab is the head of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights. He has been detained on several occasions by the regime and is currently in prison after his arrest last Saturday.

Just before Rajab's detention, the two men were interviewed by Julian Assange for almost three hours --- Assange's organisation WikiLeaks has posted a full transcript.


Bahrain Interview: 4 Activists Analyse "The Story That Should Be Covered" (Rajab/Mohammed/Khalaf/Shehabi)

Ala'a Shehabi with FamilyAl Jazeera English interviews Nabeel Rajab, the head of the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights, before his detention on Saturday; "Mohammed", an activist; Abdulhadi Khalaf, professor of sociology at Lund University in Sweden; and Ala'a Shehabi, economist and activist:

What is the story that's not being covered?

Mohammed: The scale of the ongoing and continual violations of human rights are not being explained by the media. Even compared with Syria, the numbers of Bahrainis who have been tortured and otherwise abused and killed is quite high.

Nabeel Rajab: The problem is still that most commentators focus on the Sunni-Shia split as the most important issue, when the real story is about a nation fighting for democracy and a proper political and economic system, free from corruption.

Ala'a Shehabi: If we want to get away from general terms and move to more specific stories about people's daily lives during the uprising, the way people are living with being tear-gassed on a daily basis and the long term effects of tear gas on people's health is an important story.

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Bahrain Live Coverage: Detaining Activists --- The "Twitter Excuse"

See also Syria (and Beyond) Live Coverage: Elections Today --- Sham or Substance?
Bahrain Live Coverage: Prominent Activist Nabeel Rajab Arrested

Cartoon: Carlos Latuff1653 GMT: The regime-linked Gulf Daily News has announced police reforms, including the construction of a state-of-the-art forensic laboratory, a "crime academy" to train officers, and 500 additional "community officers".

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Bahrain Live Coverage: Prominent Activist Nabeel Rajab Arrested

See also Bahrain Video Special: How the Tear-Gassing of A Village Begins
Saturday's Bahrain Live Coverage: The Many 1000s on the Highway

Nabeel Rajab Leads Protest, 1 April1950 GMT: Finally, a press release from the regime that sets out its approach against detained human rights activist Nabeel Rajab....

Prosecutors, using the Bahrain News Agency, said:

[We] filed a case against the defendant after compiling compelling evidence of his involvement in inciting illegal rallies and marches online on social networking websites....The defendant's cyber-incitement proved detrimental as [it] fuelled rioting, road blocking, arsons, acts of sabotage targeting public and private properties, in addition to the use of Molotov cocktail incendiary bombs. The inquiry has also revealed compelling evidence on the defendant's role in instigating, online, acts targeting policemen whilst on duty, leaving some of them injured.

The statement effectively convicted, "[Rajab] admitted posting the defamatory and humiliating material on his account."

Most telling, however, might be this element of truth about this morning's court hearing, "The defendant stood the trial, in the presence of his lawyer, but he refused to answer the questions about the charges leveled against him, saying that he does not recognize the court."

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Bahrain Live Coverage: The Many 1000s on the Highway

How many thousands marching on Friday in the call for significant reforms

See also Syria (and Beyond) Live Coverage: "Time to Call It What It Is"
Friday's Bahrain Live Coverage: King Hamad Goes Through The Motions

2000 GMT: The official websites of the Bahraini Police and Ministry of Interior are both off-line, apparently attacked in retaliation for the arrests of human rights activists Nabeel Rajab and Zainab Alkhawaja.

1910 GMT: Maryam Alkhawaja of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights reports on her detained colleague Nabeel Rajab:

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Syria, Bahrain (and Beyond) Live Coverage: The Shelling of a Damascus Suburb

UN observers arrive in the Damascus suburb of Douma today

See also The Real Net Effect and Libya: The Information Campaign against the Qaddafi Regime
Bahrain Special: How Regime Supporters Became The "Silent Majority" for 3 Foreign Journalists
Turkey Live Coverage (25 April): Clashes with Kurdish Insurgents, Tension with Iraq
Tuesday's Syria, Bahrain (and Beyond) Live Coverage: 80 Dead As UN Says Ceasefire "Incomplete"

2245 GMT: The US State Department has issued a statement expressing their deep concerns about the "increase in violence in Bahrain". This follows a renewal of their travel alert to Americans traveling to Bahrain, released earlier in the day. The State Department has been noticeably quiet on Bahrain in the past fortnight, following the US Ambassador's visits to the Defense Minister and Prime Minister on April 10th and 11th. Indeed, with the exception of a question on Friday about safety at the F1, Bahrain hasn't merited a mention in the recent daily State Department Press Briefings, despite the noticeable escalation in violence, suppression and regime intransigence.

The statement goes on to "urge the [Bahrain] government to consider urgently all available options to resolve the case of Abdulhadi al-Khawaja". With serious concerns about the current condition of AlKhawaja, who has been cut off from his family, his lawyer and the Danish Ambassador, this specific call by the State Department is a strong indication that they are very worried about the possibility of his death and the consequence that could have for the situation in Bahrain. However, with AlKhawaja now on day 77 of his hunger strike, such a call from the State Department may very well be too little too late.

The statement reads in full:

We are deeply concerned about the increase in violence in Bahrain, including the recent death of a protester, as well as the explosion last night that injured four policemen, two critically. We welcome the Ministry of Interior’s investigation into these incidents and look forward to seeing appropriate action taken to hold those responsible for these acts of violence to account.

We condemn the use of violence in all its forms – whether against peaceful demonstrators or police and government institutions – and urge all parties to reject such actions. Violent acts are counterproductive to efforts to rebuild trust and pursue meaningful reconciliation in Bahrain. We call on the Government of Bahrain to permit peaceful protest and to exercise maximum restraint in maintaining order, just as we call on all those demonstrating to do so peacefully.

As a longstanding partner, we continue to urge the Government of Bahrain to fully implement the recommendations of the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry, including the need to commute the sentences of those charged with offenses involving peaceful political expression and to review all sentences rendered in State of National Safety Courts in a way that ensures the fundamental principles of a fair trial are respected. Specifically, we urge the government to consider urgently all available options to resolve the case of Abdulhadi al-Khawaja. We also renew our call for the government, opposition parties, and all segments of Bahraini society to engage in a genuine dialogue leading to meaningful reforms that address the legitimate aspirations of all Bahrainis.

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Bahrain Special: The Body of Salah Abbas Habib --- Burns, Broken Bones, & Riddled With Birdshot

Huge crowds at today's funeral of Salah Abbas Habib Alqattan, killed on Friday night, allegedly by Bahraini security forces.

On Saturday morning, the body of Salah Abbas Habib was discovered on a roof in Shakhoura in Bahraini. At the time, activists claimed that Salah had been running from police on Friday night when he was fired on with birdshot. Salah had subsequently gone missing and activists accused security forces of responsibility for the death.

Salah's death certificate, released today, cites "internal bleeding and gun shots" as the cause of death. An examination of his body at the morgue also reveals severe burns, a fractured neck, and other indications of brutal treatment.

So what did happen?

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Bahrain, Syria (and Beyond) Live Coverage: Is Hunger Striker Alkhawaja Near Death?

A cameraman films Bahraini police surrounding the body of Salah Habib Abbas Alqattan, apparently slain by security forces --- near the end of the clip, a shot appears to be fired at him

See also Syria Wired: The Latest from Social Media and EA's Readers
Friday's Bahrain, Syria (and Beyond) Live Coverage: Protest Here, Protest There, Protest Everywhere?

2228 GMT: We close today's coverage with two contrasting images from Bahrain....

Mohammed Hasan, a "fixer" for foreign journalists covering stories in the kingdom, has been released from detention after he was seized this morning:

But this photograph (Warning: Graphic) appears to confirm that protester Salah Habib Abbas Alqattan was killed by birdshot fired by security forces:

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