Advocacy / United Arab Emirates
On the anniversary of the verdicts in the mass trial of prominent human rights defenders, lawyers, judges, academics and students known as the UAE94, we the undersigned call on allies of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to press the Emirati authorities to immediately and unconditionally release all those convicted following a trial that lacked the most basic international standards necessary for a fair trial and due process. Many of those who were sentenced to ten years in prison are due for release this year, yet are being held past the end of their sentences.
One year ago, the human rights community was shocked to hear of the death of Emirati human rights defender Alaa Al-Siddiq in a tragic car accident, the day after she celebrated her 33rd birthday. We, the undersigned organisations, are taking the occasion of her birthday to announce the designation of this day, 18 June, as “Alaa Al-Siddiq Day”.
Joint letter calling on the President of the United Arab Emirates, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, to intervene immediately in favour of the release of prisoners of conscience.
On International Women’s Day, MENA Rights Group joined NGOs in calling on the release of Amina al-Abdouli and Maryam al-Balushi, who have been detained arbitrarily in the UAE since 2015.
Human rights NGOs call on the UAE to immediately repeal or amend its new Law on Combatting Rumours and Cybercrime
On January 2, 2022, the UAE’s new Law on Combatting Rumours and Cybercrime went into effect, replacing the Emirates’ former 2012 Law on Combatting Cybercrime. The new Law, however, further restricts free speech in the UAE and criminalises and imposes heavy prison sentences on acts that are protected under international law. In a joint statement providing a legal analysis of this new text, MENA Rights Group and 14 human rights organisations call on the UAE to immediately repeal or sufficiently amend the law.
Don’t sportswash human rights abuses in Saudi Arabia and the UAE: NGOs write to Formula One CEO ahead of Grand Prix
In a joint letter, 16 human rights organisations call on the CEO of Formula One Group to end sportswashing ahead of the Grand Prix that will take place in Saudi Arabia and the UAE in December 2021 and, instead, to use this event as a platform to highlight human rights violations perpetrated by these regimes.
Rights-based organisations express their "deepest concern" over the election of the UAE's Ahmed Al Raisi as president of INTERPOL
On Monday November 29, 2021, a coalition of 15 rights-based organisations sent a joint-letter to INTERPOL's Secretary General, Mr Jürgen Stock, expressing their "deepest concern over the election of Mr Ahmed Al Raisi, the General Inspector of the United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) Ministry of Interior, to the presidency of INTERPOL" during the INTERPOL's 89th General Assembly last week.
45 Members of the European Parliament express concerns over UAE candidate for presidency of INTERPOL
On November 19, 2021, a group of 45 MEPs signed a joint letter to EU High Representative Josep Borrell, sponsored by MEP Ernest Urtasun under the joint initiative of two NGOs, the European Centre for Human Rights (ECDHR) and MENA Rights Group, expressing concern over the potential appointment of Emirati General Major Ahmed Nasser Al Raisi to the presidency of the International Criminal Police Organisation
PR firm hired to promote Al Raisi’s candidacy to INTERPOL presidency should end relationship with UAE government, NGOs say
Following reports that Project Associates, an advisory firm based in the U.K., was hired to promote the candidacy of Emirati official Ahmed Al Raisi to the presidency of INTERPOL, MENA Rights Group and 10 NGOs urged the company to terminate their relationship with the UAE government and Al Raisi. NGOs recalled the poor human rights record of the UAE, the continued abuses perpetrated by state security forces under Al Raisi’s leadership, and the multiple allegations of torture filed against him in France and the U.K.
From 1st October 2021 to March 2022, the UAE is hosting the Dubai Expo, the first World Expo to be held in the Arab World. The event will explore the issues of sustainability, mobility and opportunity. The country claims that “when the world comes together, we create a better tomorrow”.