Endangered Scholars Worldwide recently learned that on July 8, 2021, 59-year-old Abduljalil Al-Singace, former head of the Department of Engineering at the University of Bahrain, human rights defender and blogger who is serving a life sentence for his role in Bahrain’s pro-democracy uprising during the 2011 Arab Spring, went on a hunger strike. He started the strike in protest of the treatment he is receiving in prison: The lack of healthcare, harassment from the prison guards, illegal search of his mail and private items in his cell, and confiscation of a book manuscript he wrote in prison. The Bahraini authorities rejected the claims of poor healthcare as a reason for release. As of September 27, after 76 days of his hunger strike during which he consumed only water and milk powder, he has lost more than 40 lb. Dr. Al-Singace has several chronic illnesses, including post-polio syndrome and a musculoskeletal condition that requires the use of crutches or a wheelchair, making his hunger strike gravely dangerous.
Abduljalil Al-Singace | Photo credit: Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy
On July 30, 2021, 16 leading human rights groups including Amnesty International, Scholars at Risk and the Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy issued a statement calling for the release of Al-Singace. We. at Endangered Scholars Worldwide. join these organizations to urge Bahraini authorities to immediately release Abduljalil Al-Singace from prison. Recent outbreaks of COVID-19 in Bahrain’s Jau Prison have accentuated the urgent need to release political prisoners. ESW calls on the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and the European Parliament to continue to press the Bahrain authorities to release all prisoners of conscience along with Dr. Al-Singace, especially those who pose no threat to the public, as COVID-19 spreads rapidly in Bahraini prisons.
Please send appeals to the following:
Antony J. Blinken
United States Secretary of State
Office of Foreign Missions
U.S. Department of State
2201 C Street NW
Washington, DC 20520 USA
Michelle Bachelet Jeria
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
Palais des Nations
CH-1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland