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Since 1 July 2007, Nabeel Ahmed Rajab, vice-president of the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights (BCHR), has faced ongoing harassment, including being followed daily by civilian vehicles to and from his home. The BCHR is a non-governmental organisation that defends civil, political, economic and social rights in Bahrain, and an interim member of IFEX. Front Line has posted an appeal to help protect Rajab.

Two years ago, Rajab was the target of a smear campaign in which family members, friends, business associates and government officials received anonymous letters and telephone text messages accusing him of being a spy and committing acts of treason. In July 2005, he was beaten by police officers at a peaceful demonstration supporting the Committee for the Unemployed. In October 2006, the public prosecutor summoned him for questioning regarding the BCHR website's referral to the 'Bandargate Scandal'. The BCHR website is banned in Bahrain, as is the IFEX Arabic website.

Front Line joins BCHR in urging supporters to ask Bahrain authorities to find and prosecute those responsible for the intimidation, to safeguard Rajab and his family, and to ensure that human rights defenders are free to operate without fear of intimidation or reprisals.

Please write to Sheikh Hamad Bin Isa Al Khalifa, the King of Bahrain. For full addresses and information, see

Visit these links:
- IFEX story on Bandargate:
- IFEX Arabic website:
(Photo: Nabeel Ahmed Rajab. Courtesy of Front Line.)

14 August 2007

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