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Bahrain rights leader to face military questioning over detainee photos

Bahraini authorities said Monday that the head of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights [advocacy website, in Arabic] will face questioning by a military prosecutor over allegations that he tampered with photos of a detainee who died in custody. Nabeel Rajab posted a link on his twitter account to an album of pictures [WARNING: Readers may find these images disturbing] of Ali Isa Sager that revealed signs of alleged torture. Government officials state that these photos differed from photos taken of Sager by the medical examiner [BNA report]. According to a Ministry of Interior Police Media Center [official website] report [text], Sager died last week from injuries he sustained at a detention center while security forces attempted to bring him under control.

Last week, Human Rights Watch (HRW) and Doctors Without Borders (MSF) [advocacy websites] criticized Bahrain for rampant human rights abuses [JURIST report] related to anti-government protests. In March, the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) [official website] expressed concern over violence against protesters [JURIST report] in Bahrain and other countries embroiled in protests. The OHCHR released an additional report [text] stating that UN human rights experts question the Bahraini government's commitment to human rights. Also last month, six opposition leaders were arrested [JURIST report] after the government, backed by foreign troops from the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) [official website] violently dispersed protesters in the capital of Manama. Days earlier, Bahraini King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa [official website] declared a three-month state of emergency [JURIST report] in response to the growing unrest in the the island nation.

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