About the Society

About the Bahrain Human Rights Watch Society

Bahrain Human Rights Watch Society

The Bahrain Human Rights Watch Society (BHRWS) is a human rights and women’s rights organization based in Bahrain. The group is dedicated to protecting the rights of Bahraini women and housemaids. The society is led by businesswoman Houda Ezra Nonoo and features prominent members such as Faisal Fulad.

The Society has fought against censorship and repression of freedom of expression in Bahrain. It has called on the government to protect the rights of women, which include the right to marry, divorce, and family life. However, Bahraini NGOs have been divided by sectarian differences. Most NGOs are spin-offs of political parties and cannot appeal to broad sectors of the population. Some NGOs are elitist and have little defined constituencies.

Human rights activists have expressed concern over the treatment of prisoners. Some have accused the government of attempting to jail human rights activists on terrorism charges. Others have claimed that their sentences were politically motivated. The government is also restricting academic freedom. Some academics have been imprisoned for avoiding discussion of controversial political topics. One such case is Abduljalil al-Singace, an academic who has been in prison since 2011. The government seized his draft manuscript on the Arabic language and dialects.

Although the Bahrain government has promised to reform its prisons and detention facilities, human rights activists continue to face repression. Human rights activists report abuses by police and the Ministry of Interior. The government has failed to implement recommendations from the 2011 Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry. The government has also not criminalized security officers accused of abuse.