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Ibrahim Al-Demistani

Ibrahim Al-Demistani


Ibrahim Al-Demistani is a human rights defender, a nurse and secretary general of the Bahrain Nursing Society. Ibrahim, whose son was killed during the 2011 protests, was arrested on 17 March 2011. He served a three year sentence for allegedly ‘hiding and harbouring a fugitive’. This charge related to his treatment of a protestor who was severely injured during a demonstration in the village of Kazakan on 14 March 2011. He was subjected to torture and forced to witness the torture of his colleagues, Dr Ali Al-Ekri and Rula Al-Saffar, and to sign false statements. 

Bahrain Protest Context

Following the eruption of protests in February 2011 against government corruption and discrimination of the Shi'a majority population, the situation for human rights defenders in Bahrain became even more dangerous and difficult. Faced with widespread protests and unrest, the authorities responded with harsh measures and a crackdown on protesters, civil society leaders, human rights defenders and pro democracy activists. Human rights defenders were tried in military courts, often charged with fabricated crimes, and given hugely disproportionate sentences. Furthermore many have been ill-treated and tortured in detention, have been held incommunicado and denied access to family and lawyers, while confessions made under duress have been admitted as evidence in court in contravention of international law.


Ibrahim Al-Demestani, Bahrain - Testimony at the 2017 Dublin Platform