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Commission finds no evidence that Bahraini doctors refused to treat Sunni patients, but appeal continues

BMJ 2011; 343 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.d7800 (Published 29 November 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;343:d7800
  1. Sophie Arie
  1. 1London

The case against 20 healthcare workers accused of anti-state activities in Bahrain continued this week, with prosecutors presenting guns and knives as incriminatory evidence to a civilian court of appeal.

The healthcare workers had hoped that an independent report published on 23 November would help clear their names. But the report, from the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry, while confirming that some of the doctors were tortured in detention, did not reach definitive conclusions about their cases. The report seems not to have influenced their chances of winning an appeal against sentences of up to 15 years handed down by a military court.

Medical professionals who have been charged and convicted of alleged crimes against the state were among 58 individuals forensically examined for the independent commission’s report. One doctor reported being forced to eat his own excrement, being interrogated by a military doctor, and being made to sign 30 unknown …

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