Prominent human rights activist Nabeel Rajab has been sentenced to two years in jail by a court in Bahrain after finding him guilty of spreading “fake news”.
As per the statement, Rajab was convicted “of disseminating false news, statements and rumours about the internal situation of the kingdom that would undermine its prestige and status”.
The sentence was strongly condemend by the human rights activist across the globe. Rajab, 52, was sentenced in absentia as he has been hospitalised since April, said the Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy.
It denounced the verdict, saying Rajab had been sentenced “for speaking to journalists” and that he had “spent over a year in pre-trial detention, largely in solitary confinement”.
Imprisoning Nabeel Rajab simply for sharing his opinion is a flagrant violation of human rights, and an alarming sign that the Bahraini authorities will go to any length to silence criticism,” said Salil Shetty, Amnesty International’s secretary general.
The head of the prosecution said the charges were “not related to human rights activities and did not affect the right to free opinion and expression”.
Nabeel Rajab, who is president of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights, also risks further jail time for political tweets