Bahraini Regime Weaponizes Covid-19 to Liquidate Political Prisoners
By Staff, Agencies
The families of political detainees in Bahrain’s Jaw Prison are taking part in demonstrations to demand the release of their loved ones amid a surge in coronavirus infections at the detention facility.
The families of 120 detainees staged a sit-in on the main road of the Bahraini village of Bani Jamra. This comes after three detainees from the village were confirmed to have been infected with COVID-19, while 10 others are waiting to get tested.
Meanwhile, demonstrations also took place in Damistan, a coastal village that 45 political detainees hail from.
In Karzakan, the mother of another detainee, Abdul Aziz Abdel Reda, staged a sit-in demanding the release of her son. Abdel Reda served nearly 10 years of his life sentence and suffers from seizures and chronic headaches. His life is in danger with COVID19 spreading through Jaw Prison.
On Sunday, the families of the detainees started holding sit-ins in front of the Ombudsman building in the capital, Manama, expressing their concerns over the deteriorating situation in Bahrain’s prisons . Ministry of Interior operatives including those belonging to the police and intelligence services, responded by taking the names of the protesters and preventing them from gathering under the pretext that the law prohibits demonstrations in the capital.
In the towns of Diraz, Karana, and Al-Malikiyah, residents organized vigils to show solidarity with their children who are at risk of contracting the coronavirus.
Ayatollah Isa Qassim: One of the ugliest things the government is doing is using the prisoners as a political bargaining chip
For his part, Bahrain’s top cleric, Ayatollah Sheikh Isa Qassim, addressed the situation by saying that "one of the ugliest things the government is doing is using the prisoners as a political bargaining chip, especially since the coronavirus has forcefully invaded prisons.”
"Either the prisoners are released or they die in prisons," Sheikh Qassim wrote in a Twitter post addressing the Manama regime. "What will you choose for them?"