TEHRAN (Press Shia Agency) – Bahrain’s high court upheld a five-year jail sentence against prominent activist Nabeel Rajab on Monday for criticizing Saudi Arabia’s airstrikes in Yemen and accusing Bahrain’s prison authorities of torture, his lawyer said.
“The Court of Cassation rejected the appeal and upheld the sentence of five years in prison against Nabeel Rajab for his tweets,” his lawyer, Mohamed Al Jishi, told Reuters by phone.
On December 22, 2016, Bahraini authorities accused Rajab of making comments that “harm the interests” of the Manama regime and other Persian Gulf kingdoms through an article attributed to him and published by French daily Le Monde.
International rights groups have repeatedly called for Rajab’s immediate and unconditional release. They accuse Manama of violating freedom of expression and human rights.
Thousands of anti-regime protesters have held demonstrations in Bahrain on an almost daily basis ever since a popular uprising began in the country in mid-February 2011.
They are demanding that the Al Khalifa dynasty relinquish power and allow a just system representing all Bahrainis to be established.
The Al Khalifa regime has gone to great lengths to clamp down on any sign of dissent. On March 14, 2011, troops from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates were deployed to assist Bahrain in its crackdown.
Scores of people have lost their lives and hundreds of others sustained injuries or got arrested as a result of the Al Khalifa regime’s crackdown.