The Bahraini regime’s arbitrariness against unions and associations exposes its abuse and violations, including its dissolution of the Bahrain Teachers Association.
Today marks the tenth anniversary of the authorities’ announcement in Bahrain to dissolve the Bahrain Teachers Association for political reasons.
The dissolution came after a series of decisions and retaliatory measures taken by the authorities in response to those who participated in the widespread peaceful protests calling for democracy in 2011.
It is worth noting that Bahrain Teachers Association is the only association that was dissolved during national safety after the arrest of all its board members.
The Bahrain Teachers Association remains a member of the Executive Council for Education International. It is the first and only association in Bahrain that is a member of this international institution.
Although ten years have passed since the association’s arbitrary dissolution, it is continuing its work, and international forums still recognize it.
The association’s leaders and those in charge of its management have also received many international honours in Arab and international educational institutions.
The Gulf Institute for Democracy and Human Rights confirmed that the decision to dissolve the Bahrain Teachers Association was an arbitrary decision that came in retaliation from society’s leaders because of their political positions and their participation in the widespread protests in 2011.
The institute stated that the rulings issued against the Teachers Association leaders are nothing but clear evidence of systematic targeting and retaliation against citizens who exercise their right to freedom of expression and demand their rights through peaceful and legitimate means.
Yahya Al-Hadid, head of the Gulf Institute for Democracy and Human Rights, said: “The Bahraini authorities’ decisions to target institutions and non-governmental organizations against the background of their administrators’ participation in peaceful protests are unlawful, illegal and condemned by all standards.”
He added, “It clearly and explicitly indicates the intention of the Bahraini authorities, for more than ten years now, to eliminate any protest movement or voices calling for change, reform and legitimate rights.”
“Today is an opportunity to remind the authorities of their obligations and duties towards their citizens,” Hadid added.
He called on the Bahraini authorities to return the association as a legitimate representative of Bahrain’s teachers, which derives its legitimacy for being elected.
Also, he stressed the importance of returning the association to work with its well-known leadership, which was targeted locally but was honoured internationally.