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Rights Groups Urge Washington to Sanction Police, Spy Chiefs Globally
Local Editor

A coalition of 23 rights groups compiled a list of police chiefs, public prosecutors and heads of security services from around the globe that it wants to see sanctioned under a US law known as the Global Magnitsky Act.

US Congress

The law was signed in December 2016 amid rising tensions between Washington and Moscow. It expanded the scope of the 2012 legislation that sanctioned Russian officials over their alleged links to the death of a Russian lawyer, Sergey Magnitsky.

"The cases we have elected to highlight come from every region of the world, and involve horrific stories of torture, enforced disappearance, murder, sexual assault," the rights groups said in a letter, which urges the US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to investigate the allegations.

Out of the 15 cases submitted, one pertains to Bahrain. The kingdom's Chief of Public Prosecution, Ali bin Fadhul Al Buainain and his office are accused of seeking the harshest possible punishment - the death sentence - in a case involving a coerced confession, torture and other "grave violations of due process".

In January Manama executed three Shia men, including activist Ali al-Singace, who was initially charged and sentenced in absentia. After his detention, al-Singace and other defendants in the case reported to the Court that they were tortured during their interrogations.

However, the Office of Public Prosecution [OPP] failed to investigate the allegations or allow a medical specialist to examine the defendants.

According to the rights groups, "under the principle of command responsibility, the failure to investigate links Al Buainain to torture, a gross violation of human rights, and a particularly grievous abdication of responsibility in death penalty cases".

The signatories to the letter dated September 12, include Americans for Democracy & Human Rights in Bahrain, Human Rights Watch, Human Rights First and Reprieve.

Source: News Agencies, Edited by website team

14-09-2017 | 13:26

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