Saturday, October 1, 2011

Bahraini Lies

I was pretty much tied up at Sunway University this afternoon. I had a lengthy school meeting and therefore, I couldn’t make it in time for the Toastmasters meeting that brought together members from three clubs, namely, University of Malaya, Tunku Abdual Rahman College and HELP University. Fortunately, I was able to contact Chan Siew Peng to request her to take over my role as General Evaluator and it was a good thing I did because by the time I arrived at the Block D venue at the Faculty of Engineering, University of Malaya, the meeting was already halfway through. Still, I was glad I came because it was a Toastmasters evening of learning and sharing.

Bahrain's military court has sentenced 20 doctors, nurses and paramedics who treated protesters injured during pro-democracy rallies earlier in the year to up to 15 years in prison. The defendants have said they were tortured during interrogation to extract false confessions. Read more about it in my blog posting dated June 08, 2011.

A statement from the official Information Affairs Authority goes on to say that the medical staff, in addition to plotting a revolution, "were charged with the possession of weapons and ammunition, forcefully taking over control of Salmaniya hospital and its personnel, stealing medical equipment, and fabricating stories to disturb public security". The extent to which these stories have been spun into an intricate web of ridiculous lies is so disbelieving that I puke vomit of incredulity just reading them.

The harsh sentences, handed down by a military judge, are likely to anger Bahrain's Shia Muslim majority and torpedo any hopes of dialogue. Bahrainis have no option but to fight back.

Human rights groups say that since the unrest began in the Persian Gulf kingdom of only about 525,000 citizens, 34 people have been killed, more than 1,400 have been arrested and as many as 3,600 people have been fired from their jobs. Four people also died in custody after torture, the rights groups say (The New York TImes, September 29, 2011).

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