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Release Bahraini teaching union leaders says TUC

Issue date

Next week, the leaders of the Bahraini Teachers' Association (BTA) are having their final hearing to get the unjust sentences against them dropped. The TUC is again calling for their release.

President Mahdi Abu Dheeb and Vice President Jalila al-Salman of the BTA were sentence to ten and three years in jail last year for their role in leading the union during the Arab Spring uprisings.

Mahdi Abu Dheeb

(Mahdi Abu Dheeb, the BTA President has been denied medical attention while in jail)

Brendan Barber TUC General Secretary wrote to the Bahraini Ambassador to the UK yesterday, again calling for their release:

'I understand that the final hearing date for the appeal of Mahdi Abu Dheeb and Jalila al-Salman, the leaders of the Bahraini Teachers' Association (BTA), is set for 9 September 2012. I am once again calling on your government to drop the sentences again them.

As you will be aware, the Bahraini Independent Commission of Inquiry (BICI) recommended (at 1722(h)) that the government commute the sentences of all persons charged with 'offences involving political expression'. Education International and Amnesty International have closely studied their cases and found no evidence of the allegations that they were inciting violence. As such we consider them to be political prisoners and the Bahraini authorities to be in breach of international law and the BICI's recommendations.

I am also alarmed at the continuing reports from BTA colleagues that the authorities continue to deny Mahdi the urgent medical attention that he needs. Even if we disagree about the nature of the charges brought against him, to deny him medical treatment is inhumane and completely unacceptable.'

Please sign the petition to free the BTA leaders

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