The following information was provided by a human rights defender in Bahrain who visited Ali Humaidan’s father and also interviewed his cell mate and friend.
Ali Hamaidan is 25 years old. He lived with his father, brother and three sisters in Bahrain. His mother had passed away. He was the only breadwinner of the family.
This was Ali Hamaidan, before it happened.
Ali worked as a civil engineer, at the Ministry of Work in Bahrain, before he was arrested. He was dismissed from his work straight after his arrest, leaving his family with no income.
This was Ali Hamaidan, before his face was covered with birdshot pellets.
Ali was a hard worker. His friends say he didn’t even go to the Pearl Roundabout when everyone was protesting. He spent his time either at home or at work.
On 15th March 2011, he went to buy lunch for his family in a local cafeteria as he always did. But he never returned home. That evening his father received a call to tell him that both he and his brother had been taken to hospital. His brother had birdshot wounds to his legs whilst Ali had been shot in the face.
This was Ali shortly after he was injured, covered with birdshot pellets. He was completely blinded in one eye and the other eye was also wounded. He was taken to Salmaniya Hospital.
On 16th March the military besieged the Salmaniya Hospital and then attacked it, beating and arresting the wounded patients inside. Ali was amongst them. He was held on the 6th floor of the hospital where he is said to have been brutally tortured before being taken to Central Province police station. Another cell mate who has now been released told how at Salmaniya Hospital they were handcuffed to both sides of the bed, with constant beatings inflicted by guards and pro-gov medics, and that they were also laid down on the floor for their torturers to walk on their bodies just like carpet. They also had their faces spat on, and inside their mouths, and they were forced to swallow.
Ali was then transferred with other wounded patients to Central Province Prison, and was sentenced by a military court to two years in prison, at the same hearing as Jaffer Salman who had received the same injuries and also received the same sentence.
He was thrown into a cell with Jaffer Salman, handcuffed to him. Jaffer is reported to have said that Ali was so quiet he would have thought he was dead, had it not been for the movement of his hand. These two severely wounded, nearly blinded and innocent men, were left in their cell to suffer without treatment, and they were afraid to ask for treatment because they knew what probably awaited them at the hospital.
When Ali and Jaffer were transferred to Jaw Prison, as the first group being tried and transferred to that prison, it is reported that they received the most horrible beating which lasted for 6 hours, without any concern for their wounds. A cell mate told how Ali and Jaffer were beaten with rubber hoses and were humiliated by torturer Turkey Al-Majed, who would say to them,
“Ohh you became VIPs with your sunglasses,”
referring to the cotton they put on their injured eyes, which was said to be more painful for them to hear than was the physical torture.
This short documentary about Ali includes an interview with his father and also one of his previous cell mates.
Ali has always loved to draw and is known to be a talented artist. He still draws from prison, although this is becoming harder and harder as what little sight he has left further deteriorates . These are some of his sketches from prison.
UPDATE: Ali was finally released on appeal on Sunday 12th August 2012. Thank-you for all your support with the campaign! Please write to the Bahraini government to request compensation for Ali and his family as they have suffered greatly.