EI Calls for Release of Bahrain Teachers Leader
Jaleela Al Salman
The vice president of the Bahrain Teachers Association was arrested last week
Jaleela Al Salman was taken from her home by 30 members of the security forces inlcuding riot police and taken back to prison. She was on bail pending a December appeal against a three year sentence for 'inciting hatred towards the regime.' Before she went to court and received the sentence, Jaleela Al Salman was beaten, sexually intimidated and threatened with rape if she did not sign a false confession.
Jaleela has been an active advocator for the education of women in Bahrain. It is thought that the reason she has been rearrested may be becasue she has spoken out about human rights abuses after she was released from her 149 intital detention.
The Bahrain Teachers Association was prominent in the pro-democracy movement in Bahrain. Teachers went on strike at the beginning of the protests and since that time they and their students have been under sustained attack. There were reports of children being pulled from buses by security forces helped by the Saudi militaryand beaten up if they did not have the picture of the King of Bahrain in their textbooks.
Meanwhile Western governments – like the US and the UK – who pay lip service to democracy when it fits with their interests - continue to do business with Bahrain. The Financial Times reports that a defence pact between Bahrain and the US, which was due to be renewed this month, has been extended to 2016 . It reports a senior US official as saying: “Bahrain is a long-standing partner and ally, and we are publicly and privately committed to that partnership.” The US has military bases inside the country. To read the FT article in full go to: http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/6bdc0118-d40b-11e0-b7eb-00144feab49a.html#axzz1Z8xQrO00
Seven other members of the leadership of the Bahrain Teachers Association are in detention as are many healthworkers who are being victimised for treating victims of Bahraini government violence.
To read a detailed report of the situation of Jaleela and other public service workers go to: http://womennewsnetwork.net/2011/10/26/bahrain-female-teacher-re-arrest-exposes-human-rights-abuse/ To answer EI's urgent action appeal on behalf of Jaleela Al Saman go to: http://www.ei-ie.org/en/news/news_details/1995