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Bahrain: Technical Assistance

Question for Foreign and Commonwealth Office

UIN HL7950, tabled on 16 May 2018

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the effectiveness of UK-funded oversight bodies in Bahrain such as the Ombudsman for the Ministry of the Interior.

Answered on

1 June 2018

Our Embassy in Bahrain has a continuing dialogue with the Government of Bahrain and all Bahraini human rights oversight bodies. The British Government believes that a body with the power to investigate allegations of mistreatment in a timely, independent and transparent manner can be of great benefit to Bahraini society.

The Bahraini Ministry of Interior Ombudsman was established as an independent oversight body by Royal Decree in 2012. In 2013 the International Ombudsman Institute acknowledged that the Ministry of Interior Ombudsman fulfils its criteria for voting membership, stating that the organisation "is functionally independent of any public authority over which jurisdiction is held." It was the first organisation of its kind in the region and remains unique. In 2014 the Ministry of Interior Ombudsman's Office won the EU's Chaillot Prize for the promotion of human rights in the Gulf Cooperation Council.

The UK welcomes the conclusion of the Ombudsman and Special Investigations Unit into the cases of Mohammed Ramadhan and Hussain Moosa, resulting in the Justice Minister ordering their cases be re-tried.