Today (22 November), Markus Löning, Federal Government Commissioner for Human Rights Policy and Humanitarian Aid, issued the following statement on the occasion of tomorrow’s anniversary of the publication of the Bassiouni Report on the violent clashes in Bahrain, which took place in early 2011.
The German Government calls on all sides in Bahrain to respect human rights. It must be possible to protest peacefully. Violence is not an acceptable means to resolve political differences.
It is just as true today as it was one year ago that political dialogue, respect for human rights, upholding rule-of-law norms and credible reforms are the key when it comes to solving domestic political problems in Bahrain.
Efforts must now be stepped up to ensure that all of the Bassiouni Report’s recommendations are implemented in full without delay. In this context, we must devote special attention to the as yet unresolved court cases stemming from the events in the spring of 2011. They must be conducted in accordance with the principles of the rule of law.
The most violent clashes took date to place in Bahrain in February and March 2011, leaving at least 35 people dead and many others injured.The country has been in crisis ever since.
Bahrain’s Government has recently banned protests and revoked the citizenship of 31 members of the opposition. There had earlier been bomb attacks against police officers.
The so-called Bassiouni Commission, an international group appointed by King Hamad in July 2011, documented many human rights violations by both sides in its final report and issued recommendations on how to effectively deal with these past offences and prevent future ones.
The Government of Bahrain had also committed itself to extensive reforms during the recent Universal Periodic Review before the UN Human Rights Council this October.