Torture and Abuse in Prisons in the United Arab Emirates



This report details the torture and abuse of prisoners in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), focusing on prisoners from a group of 94 human rights defenders and activists on trial in 2013, known collectively as the UAE 94, most of whom were arrested in 2012. According to a trial observation report published in August 2013 by the Gulf Centre for Human Rights (GCHR), the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), the Arab Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) and the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies (CIHRS), the UAE 94 trial was deeply flawed. The trial of 94 intellectuals, activists, and human rights defenders, took place before the Special Security Court within the Federal Supreme Court in Abu Dhabi, between 4 March and 2 July 2013.

This report is based on research, including over 150 pages of documentation containing the statements of 56 detainees, obtained by the Gulf Centre for Human Rights (GCHR) from sources in the United Arab Emirates. It covers incidents that took place in 2012-2014. The documents include a complaint (referenced as Document 13) against the UAE Federal State Security for falsifying official documents and failing to investigate crimes of torture and depriving detainees from their legal rights granted to them by UAE law. The material was initially vetted and organised into findings by Jamie Armstrong, a British international human rights lawyer. Under the supervision of law professor David Akerson and research coordinator Claire Noone, 14 research associates at the University of Denver College of Law then compiled, analysed and edited the annexes detailing the circumstances of the abuse suffered by 57 detainees. That is not to say that other prisoners did not also suffer abuse. The Chair of the GCHR Advisory Board, Kristina Stockwood, wrote the introduction and background and edited the report.

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