Three years of Solitary Confinement of Activist Ahmed Mansour in UAE Prisons
Ahmed Mansour, a 51-year-old Emirati engineer, poet, and father of four was arrested in March 2017 in relation to his human rights advocacy in the UAE.
In 2006, Mansour began his human rights activism in the UAE and he campaigned for the release of two Emarati citizens who got arrested for writing sharing their opinion in comments online.
In 2011, the Emarati Security Services launched a smear campaign against him, after signing a petition calling for democratic and economic reforms. By the end of the year he was sentenced to three years in prison, however he was pardoned the next day along with four others sentenced with him, however this costed him his job which he lost as a result.
Furthermore, the government denied him a Certificate of Good Conduct, which meant he can never be employed anywhere. The government also confiscated his passport and banned him from travelling to receive his human rights award in Geneva.
In March 2017, Emarati Security forces stormed his house and arrested him an put him in a 4×4 by men in black balaclavas.
Mansour was taken to an unknown destination, where his family lost contact with him for a whole year, during which he was also denied access to a lawyer.
A year after he was detained, he was brought to court, which sentenced him to 10 years in jail and a fine of $272,300 for being convicted under anti-terror laws for “insulting the status and prestige of the UAE and its symbols including its leaders” and of “seeking to damage the relationship of the UAE with its neighbours by publishing false reports and information on social media”.
He had his final appeal in December 2018, and the court rejected his appeal.
According to sources close to Mansour, he had spent more than four years in solitary confinement, in a 2×2 m2 cell.
He has been separated from other prisoners within the isolation block of Al-Sadr prison, and during his exercise time, the hall gets empty of all other prisoners. The same case when he needs to be checked by a doctor.
Mansour was interrogated many times while in custody by State Security forces before his train. In December 2017, during his last interrogation, Mansour refused to give them his password to his Twitter account.
Once he returned to the cell on that evening, his clothes, mattress, personal hygiene products and towels as well as his papers and pens were taken away as a form of punishment.
Mansour went on two hunger strikes, six months apart, to claim his rights as a prisoner according to the UAE law and international law, however his solitary confinement continued.
Together For Justice condemns all the illegal practices carried out by the UAE authorities against the Emerati citizen Ahmed Mansour, starting from his arbitrary detention, torture, solitary confinement, and degrading treatment.
The organisation calls for the immediate release of Ahmed Mansour and urges the government to compensate him for the moral and material damage unjustly cause to him to silence him.
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