A group of independent UN human rights experts on July 26 called (PDF) upon Bahrain to put an end to rights violations and investigate events surrounding the "State of National Safety" declared in 2011. The experts warned against military courts exercising jurisdiction over civilians, and discrimination against women and the Shi'ite population. The report called for abolition of the death penalty, and a halt to the torture and ill-treatment of prisoners. While the "State of National Safety" officially ended after three months, the report noted an April 2017 amendment to the constitution granting military courts jurisdiction over civilians outside of a declared state of emergency.
The UN commission commended Bahrain for taking measures to better investigate abuses, and for establishing a National Institution for Human Rights. The kingdom has initiated measures to combat human trafficking, encourage advancement of women and assist the disabled. To execute these duties, the kingdom relegated the tasks to independent commissions. At the same time, the report criticized the government for not granting enough autonomy and independence to these agencies.
From Jurist, July 27. Used with persmission.
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