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Bahrain-Saudi Crackdown Targets Doctors; Demonizing Iran
WASHINGTON - May 5 - RICHARD SOLLOM, via Megan Prock, mprock at phrusa.org, bahrain.phrblog.org
Sollom is deputy director of Physicians for Human Rights and was recently in Bahrain, which was invaded by Saudi Arabia on March 14 to help the monarchy put down protesters. Sollom is co-author of the new report, “Do No Harm: A Call for Bahrain to End Systematic Attacks on Doctors and Patients.”
He said today: “The government authorities are systematically abducting and disappearing medical personnel for simply having given medical care to protesters who were hurt by government forces. … We documented deaths in custody due to torture, we documented severe abuse, including torture of patients inside the hospitals. …
“People were forced into making false confessions: that they were instructed by the Iranian government to lead these protests, to carry weapons, that they received military training from Iran. These ‘confessions’ were apparently videotaped. I wouldn’t be surprised if we started seeing some of these ‘confessions’ on TV.”
The Bahrain and Saudi regimes are close U.S. allies. Sollom said: “The [Obama] administration needs to speak up on this issue forcefully. … Since the Saudi troops arrived, the violations have increased. … In my 20 years of looking at violations of medical neutrality and violations of human rights in times of war, I’ve not seen such egregious violations.”
See interview with Sollom: democracynow.org