Bahrain to Execute 2 Shiite Protesters After Years of Desperate Appeals

Bahrain to Execute 2 Shiite Protesters After Years of Desperate Appeals

Sentenced to death in December 2014, the men have appealed several times, and each time their convictions have stood. Their one break came when, under international pressure over the case, a Bahraini oversight agency announced that it had found a doctor’s report documenting injuries on Mr. Moosa’s wrists that raised the “suspicion that he was subjected to assault and mistreatment.”

That report, the review said, had been overlooked during the initial trial.

Based on the internal review, Bahrain’s high court overturned the two men’s death sentences in October 2018, but a lower court reinstated them in January of this year. The high court reaffirmed the verdict on Monday..

Bahrain has not announced when the two men will be executed. Once the king signs off, however, execution is imminent.

In a statement, an official in Bahrain’s public prosecution office, Haroon Al Zayani, said the convictions were based on victim and witness testimony, physical evidence and technical and forensic reports, none of which he described. He said the evidence also included text messages on the defendants’ phones showing them planning to commit the crimes.

The medical reports documenting Mr. Moosa’s injuries are not “in line with the procedures of the police nor the public prosecution” office, Mr. Al Zayani said. He said the confessions were made “with full consciousness and voluntarily, without any physical or verbal coercion,” and that the men were convicted with “all the requirements of a fair trial.”

The men’s supporters and rights groups have drawn the opposite conclusion, arguing that Bahrain’s courts have been turned into a tool for the kingdom’s crackdown on political opponents.

“I know that no one is listening to me because I do not have much money, I do not have many possessions and I am not famous. However, I want my voice to be heard,” Mr. Ramadhan said in the July call to his wife. “I am innocent of the crime of which I was accused, subjected to a sham trial and sentenced to death.”

Hwaida Saad contributed reporting.

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