As the second anniversary of the pro-democracy protests in Bahrain approaches on February 14, IFEX has launched a petition in support of free expression in the country.
The petition is asking the King of Bahrain to free all human rights defenders, journalists and bloggers languishing in jail, some for life, simply for peacefully exercising their right to free expression and assembly.
IFEX member, the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights (BCHR), the most vocal independent human rights organisation in Bahrain, has been particularly targeted, with past and present BCHR representatives serving prison sentences, or on trial, including:
- • Abdulhadi Al-Khawaja, founder of BCHR, is serving a life sentence for his role in peaceful demonstrations in February and March 2011.
- • Nabeel Rajab, current President of BCHR, is serving a two-year prison sentence for calling for peaceful gatherings on Twitter, and participating in demonstrations between January and March 2012.
- • Said Yousif Al-Muhafdha, BCHR's Acting Vice President, is facing a prison sentence of up to one year for “spreading false information on Twitter,” after tweeting about human rights violations during a protest late last year.
Join us in asking the King of Bahrain to release the BCHR activists, and all those imprisoned for peacefully exercising their right to free expression.