Human Rights & Public Liberties

Human Rights & Public Liberties

Published on: 13 Jan, 2021

Gulf Centre calls on UAE to release prisoners of conscience

Published on: 4 July, 2021

The Gulf Centre for Human Rights (GCHR) has called on the UAE to immediately and unconditionally release all those convicted following a trial that violated international fair trial and due process standards.

The GCHR made this call on the eighth anniversary of the verdicts in the mass trial of prominent human rights defenders, judges, academics and students known as the UAE94,

The human rights defenders and others were imprisoned solely  for the peaceful exercise of their rights to freedom of expression and freedom to form or belong to an association. Other prisoners of conscience and Internet activists were imprisoned for denouncing this unfair trial and defending all those who were arbitrarily targeted.

GCHR has noted the failure of the UAE judiciary to conduct an independent and impartial investigation into the allegations that members of the UAE94 were subjected to torture and ill-treatment before and after their trial.  GCHR states that those responsible for the violation should be prosecuted and  redress and compensation should be made to the victims.

On 02 July 2013, the Abu Dhabi Federal Supreme Court issued verdicts convicting 69 of the 94 defendants, including eight of those convicted in absentia, and acquitted 25 of them. The prison sentences imposed ranges between seven and fifteen years.

The defendants include prominent human rights lawyer Dr. Mohammed AlRoken, a professor of constitutional law, renowned lawyers and human rights defenders Dr. Mohammad Al-Mansoori and Salem Al-Shehhi and human rights defender Sheikh Mohammed Abdul Razzaq AlSiddiq

One of the reasons the 94 were sentenced was because of a reform petition signed by 133 Emirati activists in 2011, among them Ahmed Mansoor who is currently serving a 10 year sentence in the UAE.