I noticed in my researches for this post that Nabeel Rajab is forgotten since 2018. It is the date of his last trial: precisely, when the Bahraini authorities postponed it, once more.
But now, in the crisis of COVID-19, he is at risk of this disease, because in Bahrain, jails are overcrowded.
Moreover, I want to recall that he has been sentenced to prison only for a tweet; he is an important human rights activist in his country. But we all know that there is no free speech in the UAE, and in Bahrain.
All the information we have about him is from the FIDH (International Federation for Human Rights, in English), and from Front Lines Defenders. However, the most recent one is dated from 2018; this means that the world has forgotten him:
“About the situation
On 31 December 2018, the Bahraini Supreme Court upheld a 5-year sentence against Nabeel Rajab.
On 5 June 2018, the Court of Cassation in Bahrain upheld a five-year sentence against Nabeel Rajab for tweeting about Saudi Arabia’s role in the Yemeni Civil War and about torture practices at Jaw Prison.
On 8 May, the Court of Cassation postponed the hearing against Rajab’s five-year prison sentence to 20 May 2018 for closing arguments.
On Wednesday, 21 February 2018, Bahrain’s Criminal Court sentenced Nabeel Rajab to five years in prison for tweeting about Saudi Arabia’s war on Yemen and on torture in Jaw Prison.
On 15 January 2018, the Bahraini Court of Cassation upheld the two-year sentence of human rights defender Nabeel Rajab following an appeal submitted by his defence team, in the case relating to his participation in televised interviews for which he was sentenced to two years in prison in July 2016.”
This is their last statement.
So, I write this post to raise awareness on his fate. Nabeel Rajab must be freed, because tweeting is a right, not a crime. Free speech in general is a human right.
I have written many posts in favor of his release, as a human rights activist myself. I have signed all the petitions of Amnesty International for him.
So, even if his case is forgotten now, I do think we must not. We must all continue to fight for his liberation. The COVID-19, which makes the breaking news, is a supplementary argument to act for him.
Really, in the age of coronavirus, his life is at risk. Not acting for his liberation is killing him by our indifference.
If you agree with me, please contact the FIDH, and share this post on your social networks.