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Prosecuted for having exercised his right to freedom of expression…

On 30 March, Alkarama and the International Center for Justice and Human Rights have solicited the urgent intervention of the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (WGAD) regarding the case of UAE blogger and human rights defender Osama Al Najjar, who was transferred from Al Rezeen Prison to a “counselling centre”, where he is currently detained against his will and despite the fact that he had completed his three-year prison sentence on 17 March 2017.

On 15 March 2017, Jordanian journalist Taysir Salman, also known as Taysir Al Najjar, was sentenced by the Federal Appeals Court of Abu Dhabi to three years in prison for having violated the cybercrime law by posting critical statements of the UAE’s support to Egypt’s action in Gaza on Facebook.

Yousuf Al Haj is an Omani journalist, who worked for the now banned Al Zaman newspaper. He was arrested in August 2016 and had first been sentenced to three years in prison on 25 September 2016. In December 2016, his sentence was reduced on appeal to one year in prison.

On 4 December 2016, Lebanese citizen, Ahmed Mekkaoui was sentenced by the UAE State Security Circuit of the Federal Supreme Court to 15 years in prison on the basis of confessions that were previously extracted under horrific acts of torture.