Kuwait: Human rights defenders Abdulhakim Al-Fadhli and Hamid Jameel summoned for cyber-crime investigation
On 10 February 2019, human rights defenders Abdulhakim Al-Fadhli and Hamed Jameel were summoned by the Electronic and Cyber Crime Combatting Department (ECCCD) in Kuwait, to investigate their peaceful activities on the Internet.
The investigation began when Al-Fadhli arrived at 10:30 am at the ECCCD, which is affiliated to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID), and focused on using his Twitter account to call on citizens to gather in front of the Central Apparatus for Illegal Residents’ Affairs.
Jameel was interrogated at 10 am separately and was questioned about allegedly setting up a fake Twitter account, which was used to attack two members of the Group of 80 who support Saleh Al-Fadala, head of the Central Apparatus for Illegal Residents’ Affairs.
The two men were transferred together at 6:00 pm on the same day to the Public Prosecution for Media and Cybercrimes, where they were released at 8:30 pm on bail of 200 dinars each. The two cases will be pursued by their lawyers.
Abdulhakim Al-Fadhli (pictured on the left) is a prominent human rights activist who is involved in defending people’s rights, in particular the defense of the rights of the Bedoon community in Kuwait. He also participated as an observer in monitoring human rights violations in Kuwait. He has spent the past few years being repeatedly arrested and detained. Jameel is a member of the Bedoon community and works to defend their civil and human rights.
The Gulf Centre for Human Rights (GCHR) is deeply concerned that the authorities in Kuwait have targeted both Abdulhakim Al-Fadhli and Hamid Jameel solely related to their exercise of their rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and freedom of expression on the Internet. GCHR calls upon the government of Kuwait to cease immediately harassing Abdulhakim Al-Fadhli and Hamid Jameel in addition to expedite the resolution of the problems of the Bedoon community and immediately grant them their human and civil rights as full citizens of Kuwait without discrimination.