Bahrain: Death of Yousif AlNashmi: Arbitrarily Arrested, Tortured and Deprived of Adequate Medical Care
The Bahrain Center for Human Rights believes that due to the authorities practice of arbitrary arrest, torture and deprivation of adequate medical treatment, Yousif Ali Al-Nashmi passed away today.
Yousif Ali Al-Nashmi, 31 years old, was arrested on the 17th of August 2013 as he was leaving his sister’s house in Jidhafs while a sit-in was being suppressed in the area. He was then taken to the nearby Jidhafs market area where he was reportedly verbally and physically abused before he was taken to Al-Khamees Police Station. His family asked about him in Al-Khamees Police Station and Exhibition Police Station but both denied his presence. At 11:00pm the same day, his brother received a call from the police station asking for Yousif’s ID card. The following day, he was taken to the Public Prosecution office without a lawyer and one week later, namely on the 26th of August 2013, the family received a call from him informing them of a visit date.
Al-Nashmi told his family during the first visit about what he had endured. The family also noticed that his situation was worsening. He was not interacting normally and was discombobulated. His brother also said that the medicine he was given by the prison administration was causing him partial memory loss and making him say strange things. One of his released prison mates confirmed that and said that Yousif was sleepless, acting strange and complaining from headaches. (For more details read: http://bahrainrights.org/en/node/6398)
His brother received a call on the 19th of September 2013, that Yousif had been admitted to Salmaniya Medical Complex due to increasing headaches and drowsiness. His brother tried to visit him but the hospital denied his presence. The family later confirmed that he had been at the hospital. He was transferred back to the prison later that day.
He was not adequately examined by specialists during his visit to the hospital. There was high suspicion that his condition was not appropriately diagnosed so that he could be discharged back to prison. He collapsed in the prison the day after his discharge and went into a deep coma. He was taken to Salmaniya Medical Complex again where he was fully examined and diagnosed to have a severe edema from an undiagnosed source. Al-Nashmi was also diagnosed of brain cancer according to his family. His lawyer appealed for his release based on his condition. He was released only a few days ago, on the 8th of October 2013.
The body of Mr. Al-Nashmi was found to have torture marks in different areas including the head which raises the suspicion that torture may have had an effect on his condition. This can only be confirmed by a proper and independent forensic examination.
The BCHR is gravely concerned that Al-Nashmi, like Mohammed Mushaima, is the victim torture and denial of adequate medical care causing death. Prisoners in Bahrain are systematically denied adequate medical care, and the BCHR has time and time again raised concern about this issue.
The BCHR demands urgent proper forensic examination and documentation of the body of Mr. Al-Nashmi and also the investigation of the reported misdiagnosis and mistreatment he suffered at the hospital for being a political prisoner. All prisoners must be immediately allowed access to adequate medical care. The continuation of the current violations against all prisoners in Bahrain may lead to future loss of lives.