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Medics on Trial in Bahrain

Bahraini Doctors at Work

PHR began working on behalf of our medical colleagues in Bahrain in 2011, when the Bahraini regime began to wrongfully target and imprison doctors for upholding principles of medical neutrality. By daring to provide medical treatment to Bahraini citizens regardless of political affiliation or creed, dozens of Bahraini physicians became targets of the State.

Though many imprisoned medical personnel have now been released from jail, three remain wrongfully detained. PHR calls upon Bahrain to release Ibrahim Aldemestani and Dr. Ali Al-Ekri who received lengthy jail terms for trumped up charges, as well as more-recently arrested ophthalmologist Dr. Saeed Al-Samahiji. From prison, Aldemestani and Dr. Al-Ekri, along with a nurse who has completed his sentence, wrote a letter defending their right to uphold the principles of medical neutrality. We support their call, as we recognize that many of the medics released from prison still face systematic discrimination in the country.

The data below tracks the imprisonment of Bahraini physicians since 2011. Initially, two large groups of medics were accused of misdemeanor and felony charges and tried as groups, while four medics were tried individually. Following an international outcry, in-part led by PHR, draconian convictions of up to 15 years for baseless charges were in some cases reduced to months. While some doctors have served their shorter sentences and been released, many have had their medical licenses stripped. Currently, many of these physicians remain barred from employment for unacceptable political or sectarian reasons.


The following health professionals are still imprisoned in Bahrain:

  • Dr. Ali Al-Ekri, pediatric orthopedic surgeon — charged with felony and initially sentenced to 15 years, reduced to 5 years (estimated date of release: March 2017)
  • Ibrahim Aldemestani — 15 years, reduced to 3 years — charged with both misdemeanor and felony (estimated date of release: April 2015)
  • Dr. Saeed Al-Samahiji, ophthalmologist — 10 years, reduced to 1 year


The following health professionals were charged with felonies. Some served their full setences, some had their sentences reduced, and some were eventually acquitted. Those who were tried in absentia did not serve their sentences. Everyone on this list has been released.

Sentences reduced or sustained:

  • Dr. Ghassan Dhaif, maxillofacial surgeon — initially sentenced to 15 years, reduced to 1 year
  • Dr. Mahmoud Asghar, pediatric surgeon — 15 years, reduced to 6 months, released for time served
  • Dr. Abdulkhaleq Al-Oraibi, rheumatologist —15 years, reduced to 1 month, released for time served
  • Dr. Bassim Dhaif, orthopedic surgeon — 15 years, reduced to 1 month, released for time served
  • Dr. Nader Diwani, pediatrician — 15 years, reduced to 1 month, released for time served
  • Ali Hassan Al-Sadadi — 15 years, tried in absentia
  • Dr. Qassim Mohammed Omran — 15 years, tried in absentia
  • Deya Ebrahim Jaffer, nurse — 5 years, reduced to 2 months, released for time served
  • Hassan Salman Al-Maatouq, nurse, Salmaniya Medical Complex — 3 years
  • Younis Ashouri, Administrator, Muharraq Maternity Hospital — 3 years
  • Ahmed Almushatat, Pharmacist — 2 years
  • Hassan Alarabi, medical student — 6 months

Acquitted:

  • Rula Al-Saffar, Head of Nursing, Salmaniya Medical Complex — initially sentenced to 15 years
  • Sayed Marhoon Al-Wedaie, Director of Paramedics and Ambulances — 15 years
  • Dr. Nada Dhaif, dentist — 15 years
  • Dr. Ahmed Abdulaziz Omran Hassan — initially sentenced to 15 years
  • Dr. Hassan Mohammed Nasser Al-Toblani, head of ICU — 10 years
  • Dr. Zahra Al-Sammak, anesthesia consultant — 5 years
  • Mohammed Faeq Ali Al-Shehab, lab technician — 5 years
  • Dr. Fatima Haji, rheumatologist — 5 years
  • Dr. Najah Khalil, consultant, family physician, Deputy Chief of Medical Services for Primary Health Care — 5 years


The following health professionals were charged with misdemeanors. Some had sentences sustained, and others were eventually acquitted.

  • Sayed Adnan Ateya Mohammed, paramedic – sentenced to 3 months, now released
  • Dr. Sadiq Abdulla, transplant surgeon
  • Dr. Kulood Al-Durazi, consultant, obstetrician and gynecologist
  • Abdulhussain Ali Ebrahim
  • Ali Ahmed Esa Ghanim
  • Dr. Jaffer Salman Ahmed Hassan
  • Ali Said Abdullah, assistant paramedic
  • Ameen Jaffer Abdullah Ahmed, paramedic
  • Dr. Jalila Al-Aali, endocrinologist
  • Hani Al-Aswad, ambulance driver, Salmaniya Medical Complex
  • Dr. Abdullah Mohammed Hassan Al-Durazi
  • Dr. Dunia Al-Hashimi
  • Hassan Ali Al-Saffi, Assistant Paramedic
  • Dr. Kulood Yaqob Al-Sayyad, senior pediatric resident
  • Dr. Nehad Al-Shirawi, ICU consultant (specialist)
  • Hamza Hassan Esa Ali, auxiliary
  • Dr. Abdulshaheed Fadhel, plastic surgeon
  • Mohammed Ali Fateel, Assistant Paramedic
  • Dr. Nabeel Hameed, neurosurgeon
  • Abdulkareem Abdullah Saleh Hassan
  • Ebrahim Hassan Ali Hassan
  • Dheya Abu Idris, nurse
  • Dr. Sadiq Jaffar, pediatric resident, Salmaniya Medical Complex
  • Jameela Abdulhussain Jassim, nurse
  • Dr. Arif Rajab, dental surgeon
  • Addul Ameer Abdullah Salman, assistant paramedic
  • Dr. Nayera Sarhan, consultant, family physician
  • Dr. Nabeel Tammam, ENT surgeon


At least 40 additional health professionals were abducted or detained and released without charge:

  • Mohammed Abbas, ambulance driver, Salmaniya Medical Complex
  • Abeer Abdulaaziz, nurse, Isa City Medical Center
  • Samia Abdulkareem, nurse
  • Yaser Abdulla, paramedic
  • Dr. Eman Al-Eraidh, Al-A’ali Medical Center
  • Dr. Sadiq Al-Aali, Al-A’ali Medical Center
  • Maytham Al-Amir, nurse
  • Dr. Nabeel Al-Asheeri, pediatrics surgeon
  • Ameen Al-Aswad, paramedic, Salmaniya Medical Complex
  • Dr. Fareeda Al-Dalal, Al-A’ali Medical Center
  • Dr. Hisham Al-Ekri, pediatrician
  • Dr. Radhi Al-Ekri
  • Dr. Zakariya Al-Ekri
  • Khatoon S. Hashem Al-Ghani, dental assistant
  • Zahra Sayed Al-Hashem, nurse
  • Dr. Hannan Al-Hawaj, Isa City Medical Center
  • Fadil Al-Mosawai, head of nursing, Isa City Medical Center
  • Nawal Khalil Al-Owainati, Deputy Director of Nursing Services
  • Ghadeer Jassim Al-Sammak, employee, Salmaniya Medical Complex
  • Dr. Jaafar Al-Touq
  • Abdulrasool Ali, nurse, Isa City Medical Center
  • Mohsin Ashoor, ambulance driver
  • Dr. Laila Ashour, Isa City Medical Center
  • Sayed Salih Hashim, administration, Isa City Medical Center
  • Ali Hilal, nurse
  • Dr. Ahmed Jamal, former head of Bahrain Doctors’ Association
  • Dr. Raja Kadhum
  • Dr. Nedhal Kalifa, dermatologist
  • Batool Khadum, nurse, Isa City Medical Center
  • Dr. Majeed Khalaf, Surgical Resident
  • Ali Al Magabi, school nurse
  • Dr. Hussain Makki, pediatrician
  • Dr. Fatima Malalah, Isa City Medical Center
  • Dr. Khalil Matar, consultant, family physician
  • Adnan Mohammed Al-Mosawy, ambulance driver
  • Mahdi Mullah, nurse
  • Sayed Hussein Qamar, nurse, Isa City Medical Center
  • Asma’a Salman, nurse, Isa City Medical Center
  • Jaafar Ahmed Salman, assistant paramedic
  • Yousif Yaqoob Yousif, Salmaniya Medical Complex