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Bahrain: Human Rights

Foreign and Commonwealth Office written question – answered on 4th November 2019.

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Photo of Tom Brake Tom Brake Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Exiting the European Union), Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Duchy of Lancaster)

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what assessment his Department made of the (a) human rights situation in Bahrain since the execution of three men in that country in July 2019 and (b) efficacy of the UK Government's technical assistance programme to Bahrain.

Photo of Andrew Murrison Andrew Murrison Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) (Joint with the Department for International Development)

Bahrain remains a Foreign and Commonwealth Office human rights priority country, partly because of the use of the death penalty. Following the execution of three men in July 2019, Lord Ahmad issued a statement expressing deep concern and the UK raised the matter at the September Human Rights Council in Geneva. In addition, I called Dr Sheikh Abdullah, Bahraini Undersecretary for International Affairs following the executions, to express our disappointment. The Government of Bahrain is fully aware of the UK’s clear and longstanding position; we oppose the death penalty in all circumstances and all countries.

On British assistance, we are committed to supporting Bahrain-led reform and are confident of its positive impact across a variety of areas including building effective and accountable institutions, strengthening the rule of law, and police and justice reform. We continue to monitor events closely, regularly raising human rights concerns with the Government of Bahrain at senior levels, both in private and public, and most recently at the UK-Bahrain Joint Working Group on 17 October.

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