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Bahrain activist's daughter sentenced to month in jail for staging protest

A court in Bahrain on Thursday sentenced [Gulf Times report] Zainab Al-Khawaja, the daughter of jailed pro-democracy activist Abdulhadi Al-Khawaja [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] to one month in prison for trying to organize an anti-government protest, according to Bahraini opposition groups. The court also fined her $530 on Monday on a separate charge of insulting a government employee. Zainab Al-Khawaja refused to pay the fine [Al Jazeera report] and will face an additional 40 days in prison unless she pays it. Abdulhadi Al-Khawaja has been on hunger strike for three months, expressing opposition to the Bahraini government's ongoing trials of pro-democracy protesters. He was sentenced to life in prison [JURIST report] in June 2011. Zainab Al-Khawaja is scheduled for another hearing on Sunday [AP report] on other protest-related charges.

Tension between Bahrain's government and protesters has escalated recently. Three weeks ago, Bahraini authorities arrested [JURIST report] prominent human rights activist Nabeel Rajab. Earlier in May, Human Rights Watch (HRW) [advocacy website] called for the immediate release [JURIST report] of the leader's of last year's anti-government protests, including Abdulhadi Al-Khawaja. In April, HRW issued a report claiming that Bahraini police were abusing detained protesters [JURIST report]. Earlier in April, Amnesty International [advocacy website] declared that Bahrain's government committed human rights violations [JURIST report] against anti-government protesters.

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