A US-based rights group said political prisoners were subject to rape and death threats and a majority had experienced acts of abuse and torture.
Bahraini security forces made threats of rape and murder, tortured detainees to extract coerced confessions from female political prisoners, a report by a US-based rights group says.
Americans for Democracy & Human Rights in Bahrain (ADHRB) said that women prisoners had been abused “at every stage of the criminal procedure.”
It further condemned the US and UK for helping to train the Bahraini officials who are accused of carrying out abuses, accusing the pair of complicity.
The group said its research was based on interviews with nine current and former prisoners of the Bahraini state.
“The torture started from the first moment in the car by masked, armed, civilian-clothed men,” said Medina Ali, one of the women interviewed by ADHRB. She went on to add: “I was blindfolded and tortured with violent beatings aimed at the face and hitting my head against the wall violently.”
Two women, Ebtisam al Saegh and Najah Yusuf, alleged they were sexually assaulted during an interrogation by Bahrain’s National Security Agency.
.@ADHRB & @BirdBahrain_ release new report, which examines the cases of 9 former and current women #PoliticalPrisoners in #Bahrain from the moment of their arrest through their interrogation, trial, & detention - highlighting instances of #torture & abuse https://t.co/yl6acUGLv9 pic.twitter.com/YxkUhNjTtm— ADHRB (@ADHRB) September 11, 2019
The pair has criticised Formula One’s decision to host a grand prix in Bahrain despite the latter’s poor human rights record.
According to Saegh, her interrogator reportedly boasted: “I am called the Torturer, my hobby is torture, my profession is to torture. I have the art of torture.”
Other complaints made by the prisoners about their time in prison included allegations of beatings, solitary confinement, and being made to remain in stress positions for extended periods of time.
The report also said that detainees were denied medical care, as well as visits by family members.
Bahrain has previously been condemned for the use of torture by the UN.
The report by ADHRB coincided with a statement put out by Amnesty International condemning Bahrain’s treatment of Dr Abdel Jalil al Singace, who it describes as a ‘prisoner of conscience’. Singace was denied adequate medical care, the rights group said.
Bahrain launched a widespread crackdown on the largely Shia Muslim opposition after pro-democracy protests in 2011.
The country has been accused of torture, extrajudicial killing, and convicting protesters on capital offences in flawed trials.
Members of the Bahraini opposition have also had their citizenship stripped for taking unpopular political positions, rendering them stateless.