[QODLink]
Middle East
Bahrain charges medics for aiding protesters
Doctors and nurses who treated injured anti-government protesters to stand trial in military court.
Last Modified: 03 May 2011 14:32
Physicians for Human Rights said at least 32 health care professionals have been detained under martial law

Several doctors and nurses who treated injured anti-government protesters during months of unrest in Bahrain have been charged with acts against the state and will be tried in a military court, the justice minister has said.

At a press conference on Tuesday, Khaled bin Ali Al Khalifa, the justice minister, read the charges against the medical staff, which included "promoting efforts to bring down the government'' and "harming the public by spreading false news.''

Al Khalifa also said that another 23 doctors and 24 nurses faced charges included participating in attempts to topple the Gulf island's Sunni monarchy and taking part in illegal rallies.

The announcement is the latest in the Sunni rulers' pursuit of Shia opposition supporters after weeks of street marches demanding greater freedoms, equal rights and an elected government in Bahrain.

Separately, two former parliament members of the country's main Shia party Al Wefaq were arrested on Monday, according to a senior party leader, Abdul-Jalil Khalil.

'Medical professionals targeted'

International rights groups say Bahrain is targeting medical professionals who treated injured demonstrators at the Salmaniya medical centre, which was later overrun by the military with doctors and patients saying soldiers and police had conducted interrogations and detentions inside the complex.

Physicians for Human Rights said in a report last month that at least 32 health care professionals have been detained since Bahrain declared martial law.

The report by the US-based group detailed attacks on physicians, medical staff and patients "with weapons, beatings and tear gas.''

Hundreds of protesters, opposition leaders, human rights activists and lawyers have been detained since emergency rule was imposed by Bahrain's Sunni rulers on March 15.

At least 30 people have died since the protests began in mid February. Among the dead are also four opposition supporters who died in custody, including a blogger.

On Thursday, four anti-government protesters were convicted of killing two policemen during the protests and sentenced to death by a military court.

Three other demonstrators got life sentences.

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
An innovative rehabilitation programme offers Danish fighters in Syria an escape route and help without prosecution.
Street tension between radical Muslims and Holland's hard right rises, as Islamic State anxiety grows.
Take an immersive look at the challenges facing the war-torn country as US troops begin their withdrawal.
Ministers and MPs caught on camera sleeping through important speeches have sparked criticism that they are not working.
Featured
Chinese scientists are designing a particle-smashing collider so massive it could encircle a city.
Critics say the government is going full-steam ahead on economic recovery at the expense of human rights.
Spirits are high in Scotland's 'Whisky Capital of the World' with one distillery thirsty for independence.
President Poroshenko arrives in Washington on Thursday with money and military aid on his mind, analysts say.
Early players in private medicine often focused on volume over quality, turning many Chinese off for-profit care.
join our mailing list