Six US Activists Arrested in Bahrain While Monitoring
Military Crackdown

by Allison Deger

February 15, 2012

Yesterday, six international activists where arrested in
Bahrain while attempting to monitor the government crackdown
on protesters commemorating the one-year anniversary of
uprisings.  The arrest comes a few days after two activists
from the same group of internationals were deported from

Huwaida Arraf and Radhika Sainath sent out the following
press release:

    Six US citizens arrested in Bahrain, to be deported

    For Immediate Release

    (Manama) - Six US Citizens were arrested by Bahraini
    security forces in Manama on Tuesday during a peaceful
    protest on the way to the Pearl Roundabout. Protesters
    had marched into the city center to reestablish a
    presence of nonviolent, peaceful protest on the one year
    anniversary of the Arab Spring uprising in Bahrain.

    The international observers were in Bahrain as part of
    Witness Bahrain, an effort aimed at providing civilian
    presence to report and monitor the situation on the
    ground ( Leading up to February
    14, the one year anniversary of pro-democracy protests,
    Bahraini authorities had prevented journalists, human
    rights observers and other internationals from entering
    the country, leading many to fear a brutal crackdown.

    Just yesterday, Secretary of State spokesperson Victoria
    Nuland stated that the US wanted to see the "security
    forces exercise restraint and operate within the rule of
    law and international judicial standards." But she
    failed to condemn the violent arrests of US
    international observers, the detainment of numerous
    Bahraini pro-democracy activists (including President of
    the Bahraini Center for Human Rights, Nabeel Rajab) and
    the ongoing use of overwhelming amounts of tear gas.

    The six US citizens were part of a peaceful protest
    marching towards the Pearl Roundabout - site of last
    year's peaceful round-the-clock protest in Bahrain,
    modeled after Egypt's Tahrir Square - when they were
    attacked. Bahraini authorities appear to have targeted
    the Witness Bahrain observers, as one volunteer was told
    that she was detained for reporting on the February 11th
    Manama protest.

    Kate Rafael works at a San Francisco law firm and is a
    radio journalist, blogger and political activist from
    Oakland, California.

    Flo Razowsky is photographer and community organizer
    based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She is a Jewish anti-
    Zionist activist with Witness Bahrain and several
    Palestine solidarity organizations.

    Linda Sartor teaches graduate school, and is a community
    activists based out of Northern California. She has been
    a human rights activist in Palestine, Sri Lanka, Iran,
    Afghanistan and Bahrain.

    Paki Wieland is a retired social worker/family therapist
    educator in the Department of Applied Psychology,
    Antioch University, Keene, New Hampshire. Since the
    1960s, she's also been a dedicated anti-war and civil
    rights activist.

    Mike Lopercio is a restaurant owner from Arizona and has
    visited Iraq with a Military Families delegation.

    Brian Terrell lives and works at Strangers and Guests
    Farm in Maloy, Iowa. He is a long time peace activist
    and a co-coordinator of Voices for Creative Nonviolence.

    The six observers remain in Bahraini custory in the Naem
    Police Station in Manama. This group of internationals
    is the second to be deported by the Bahraini government.
    Attorneys Huwaida Arraf and Radhika Sainath were
    deported on Saturday, February 11th. The two were
    handcuffed for the duration of their flight from Bahrain
    to London.

Raw video footage of activist Huwaida Arraf facing arrest in
Bahrain on February 11, 2012.

Supporting the arrestees, the International Jewish Anti-
Zionist Network additionally issued an action alert, calling
on the Bahrain government to return the activists and not
handcuff them during the flight:

    REQUESTS: Return delegates stuff AND do NOT handcuff
    them on long journey home


    1. Call embassy in Bahrain and ask for an off-duty
    consular to go down to where the delegates are being
    held and make these demands: 011 973 1724 2700

    2. Email embassy in Bahrain and ask for the same:
    [log in to unmask]

    3. Call the US State Department Bureau of Consular
    Services, Citizen's Services (888) 407-4747. Try to
    speak to Trish Cyper-Burley. If she is not available
    then ask to speak with someone who is. - let them know
    that you are relying on the embassy to do their job and
    protect the rights of their citizens who are there as
    human rights activists

    SOLIDARITY ACTION: Sign this petition to President Obama
    to stop any new arms deals Bahrain!


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