UN chief urges Bahrain to respect human rights

UN chief urges Bahrain to respect human rights
Sat Feb 15, 2014 11:28:50

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has called on the Bahraini regime to respect its “international human rights obligations” in dealing with peaceful protest rallies in the Persian Gulf nation.

In a Friday note to correspondents in New York City, the UN chief “urged the [Bahraini] authorities to act in strict accordance with their international human rights obligations,” said a UN spokesperson, whose name was not mentioned in the report.

Ban also expressed regret that tension remains in Bahrain three years after the nation's popular uprising began.

The UN secretary-general “called consistently on all sides in Bahrain to exercise restraint and refrain from violent acts.”

Ban said “all political constituencies and actors will need to participate freely in the dialogue for it to produce meaningful outcomes that respond to the legitimate aspirations of all Bahrainis.”

The comments came as several people were injured on Friday in an attack by regime forces on protesters marking the third anniversary of the uprising against the ruling Al Khalifa family.

Witnesses said security forces fired tear gas and birdshot to disperse the peaceful demonstrators in several towns and villages including the capital, Manama. Over two dozen demonstrators were also arrested.

The violence occurred just hours before a planned major demonstration at the iconic Pearl Square in Manama.

On February 13, Bahraini regime forces detained nearly 30 protesters in several villages around the capital on charges of “rioting and vandalism.”

International human rights organizations have repeatedly slammed the Manama regime for the excessive force it uses against peaceful protests.

According to local sources, scores of people have been killed and hundreds arrested during the three years of uprising.

Physicians for Human Rights organization say Bahraini doctors and nurses have been detained, tortured, or disappeared, because they have “evidence of atrocities committed by the authorities, security forces, and riot police” in the crackdown on anti-regime protesters.


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