[QODLink]
Middle East
Lengthy jail terms for Bahrain protesters
Thirty-six people given prison sentences of between 15 and 25 years for taking part in anti-government rallies.
Last Modified: 03 Oct 2011 12:21
Rallies erupted in February with protesters demanding political reform and greater political freedoms [Reuters]

Thirty-six people in Bahrain have been given prison sentences of between 15 and 25 years in three separate cases for taking part in anti-government protests earlier this year.

Matar Matar, a former opposition legislator with the Shia party al-Wefaq, told Al Jazeera that 14 of the convicted had been sentenced to life, meaning they face 25 years in prison.

Prosecutor Yusof Fleifel, quoted by BNA state news agency, said the 14 were convicted of beating to death a Pakistani "with a terrorist aim", as well as "assembling for riots".

Another 15 were sentenced to 15 years in jail after being found guilty of attempting to murder military personnel, in addition to taking part in protests and vandalism at Bahrain University in Manama, BNA said.

The third case involved seven university students, six of whom were jailed 15 years, while another was sentenced to 18 years, over charges including attempted murder targeting several people at the university.

The three groups were sentenced by the National Safety Court, a special security court set up following a mid-March clampdown on the Shia-led protests.

Medics sentenced

Last week, doctors and nurses accused of aiding demonstrators were also given prison terms. They have vowed to appeal their sentences later this month.

 

"A session has been set for October 23 to look into the appeals," chief prosecutor Abdulrahman al-Sayyed said in a statement carried by the official BNA news agency.

 

The National Safety Court had sentenced 20 doctors, nurses and paramedics to jail terms of between five to 15 years.

"The judgement in these cases is not final ... all the defendants can appeal the court's judgement," Sayyed said.

Since the March crackdown, several groups of defendants - doctors, activists, and opposition figures alike - have been tried in the quasi-military court.

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
The author argues that in the new economy, it's people, not skills or majors, that have lost value.
Colleagues of detained Al Jazeera journalists press demands for their release, 100 days after their arrest in Egypt.
Mehdi Hasan discusses online freedoms and the potential of the web with Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.
A tight race seems likely as 814 million voters elect leaders in world's largest democracy next week.
Featured
Since independence, Zimbabwe has faced food shortages, hyperinflation - and several political crises.
After a sit-in protest at Poland's parliament, lawmakers are set to raise government aid to carers of disabled youth.
A vocal minority in Ukraine's east wants to join Russia, and Kiev has so far been unable to put down the separatists.
Iran's government has shifted its take on 'brain drain' but is the change enough to reverse the flow?
Deadly attacks on anti-mining activists in the Philippines part of a global trend, according to new report.
join our mailing list