Bahrain police shot 9-year-old boy in eye

Written by  Published by:Shiite News
Published in Bahrain
Thursday, 13 August 2015

Mohammed Mahmood Ali Habib was shot in his left eye while he was walking from his grandfather’s house to his house in the Bani Jamra area. An armored vehicle came from behind, startling him, and suddenly shots from the vehicle were fired in his direction. He was wounded with one pellet in the left eye and a number of cars parked in the same area were also damaged. There were no reports of any protests in the area.

Mohammed’s family immediately took him to Barbar Health Center, where they were told to take him to Salmaniya Hospital. Once they arrived there, his father was interrogated by an officer about how the injury had happened and who had shot at the boy. Mohammed then went through surgery that consisted in cleaning the injured eye. However, the pellet was not able to be removed from the eye due to the risks of removing it from its location behind the eye. The family was told to wait until the following week when it might be possible to remove it by undergoing a new surgery.

Before the surgery, the criminal investigation team videotaped Mohammed and took his clothes. The following day, an officer visited Mohamed to try to talk to him, which was not possible due to the fact that Mohammed was under the effects of anesthesia. The boy’s current health situation is stable but no medical report has yet been delivered to his family as of 10 August 2015.

This is yet another example of the worrisome excessive use of force by Bahraini authorities and the lack of improvement of their behaviour. BCHR has previously documented cases of serious injuries caused by the misuse of force in Bahrain, including the case of Ahmed Mansoor Al Naham, a five-year-old child who was blinded after being shot by security forces.

On 29 June 2015, the US announced plans to lift the long-standing ban on arm sales from the US to Bahrain. BCHR reiterates its concerns against the sales of arms to Bahrain at a time when the authorities are continuing their violations of human rights, including the disproportionate and unnecessary use of force.

Based on the above, The Bahrain Center for Human Rights (BCHR) calls on the Government of Bahrain to:

Take all the necessary actions to provide all the medical requirements to the injured child Mohammed Mahmood;
Hold the security officers who took part in the attack responsible for the long term damage they have caused to Mohammed;
Immediately stop the excessive use of force in Bahrain.

Additionally, BCHR calls on the United States and other governments to:

Stop supplying military aid and arms to Bahrain;
Put pressure on the Bahraini government to fully reform and respect human rights.

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