Abdul Jalil Al-Singace, a famous Bahraini human rights activist, pays the price for his human rights activity and protection of the oppressed by spending years in the Al-Khalifa regime’s jails.
Al-Singace is a well-known Bahraini human rights activist who worked as a university lecturer and engineer. Since 2011, he has been serving a life sentence at Jau Prison.
At the age of 49, he was imprisoned and tortured by security forces after taking part in anti-democratic rallies in 2011, and he was accused of trying to topple the government.
Al-Singace has been on a hunger strike for almost nine months in protest of his inhumane and unfair treatment in jail.
Dr Abdel Jalil was detained without a warrant from his house on March 17, 2021, by roughly 48 police officers, some of whom were disguised and dressed in civilian clothing.
A Saudi accent was detected on the lips of several of these policemen. They pulled him and held him at gunpoint when he was “in his underpants and without his spectacles.”
Officers allegedly assaulted him both inside and outside his house. They then transported him to a police station for a few hours before arresting him in Al-Qurain Military Prison.
Dr Abdel Jalil was exposed to physical and psychological abuse throughout his questioning. Officers blindfolded him, handcuffed him, and viciously beat him. They slammed their fists and sticks into his skull and sexually attacked him. Despite his ill condition, the cops had him lick their shoes and stand for lengthy periods of time.
Since boyhood, he has battled a variety of chronic diseases, including post-polio syndrome and a musculoskeletal problem that forced him to walk with a wheelchair or crutches. Officers forced him to stand up without his crutches and booted him on the right leg until he collapsed to the ground.
He was also held in solitary confinement for two months and given limited nourishment, resulting in a ten-kilogram weight drop.
His cell was very tiny, dark, and chilly. In addition, the cops verbally harassed him, yelling and humiliating him and telling him he didn’t deserve to live. They also threatened to rape his daughter or wife and threatened him personally.
Dr Abdel Jalil produced a false confession due to his torture. He was imprisoned at Jau Prison, where he suffered from ill-treatment as his health worsened. He was sentenced to life in prison by the National Military Safety Court in June 2011 for trying to topple the government.
Due to the beatings, he received from the cops, he developed discomfort in his left shoulder and left rib throughout his incarceration. Because he was forced to stand on his leg with his wrists lifted and bound, his carpal tunnel syndrome deteriorated as a result of the beating.
After being without his spectacles for more than a month, his eyesight also degraded. The jail authorities denied him the necessary medical attention. He was denied his medical prescriptions, which included medical gadgets, due to medical malpractice.
And when the Jaw Prison administration failed to repair the rubber gasket on his crutches in June 2021, he was forced to rely on the old and unpleasant padding, which caused him to slip regularly. After tremendous worldwide pressure, the authorities only allowed the fillings in his crutches to be changed.
Throughout his detention, his hunger strike, which was in protest of the authorities’ strict professional procedures and limitations, jeopardised his health.
Al-Singace went on a hunger strike in July 2021 to protest the theft of a book he had been working on for four years on Bahraini culture and languages.
Dr Abdel-hunger Jalil’s strike lasted 286 days, and his health has considerably worsened. He was transferred to Kano Medical Center after being taken to the hospital.
He had migraines, dizzy spells, and shortness of breath at the centre. After his oxygen levels plummeted, he had to be given an oxygen mask since his hands were extremely chilly and swollen. His blood sugar level plummeted to 2 mmol/L after he shed more than 20 kg.
Tea, drinking milk, sugar, salt, and water are all part of his hunger strike. However, under a shortage, the authorities cut the quantity of sugar delivered to him. Physicians neglected his illness, only seeing him every two or three weeks and delaying his request for painkillers.
Al-Singace refused to call off his strike as long as the authorities continued to deny him fundamental rights and failed to deliver on their promise to return the book if the strike was called off.
Apart from his book, Al-Singace is demanding that the military hand over his new passport and identity to his family, allow him to communicate with them via video call, provide him with crutches and a hot water bottle for his back, and hand over the MRI images he took in the hospital to the military.
The officers’ arbitrary arrest, torture, and assault of Al-Singace, as well as the restrictions imposed on him, are clear violations of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel or Inhuman Treatment or Punishment (CAT) and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, both of which Bahrain is a signatory.
His right to life, guaranteed by Article 6 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, was jeopardised not only by the years of medical negligence but also by the worsening of his condition as the government continued to ignore his hunger strike requests.
As a result, the treatment and circumstances in jail are clearly in violation of the Nelson Mandela Rules, which are the United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners.
In light of the combined accusation letters made in November and December 2021 concerning Al-Singace, Americans for Democracy and Human Rights in Bahrain (ADHRB) called on Bahraini authorities to react to the UN Special Procedures offices and satisfy their requests.
ADHRB also demanded that Al-Singace, who has been imprisoned for his peaceful human rights activism, be released immediately and unconditionally, that allegations of torture and ill-treatment be investigated, that those responsible be held accountable, and that he receive timely and necessary medical treatment.