Bahrain – the tiny gulf state and oil Kingdom has been experiencing social upheaval for nearly a year now as citizens demand greater freedom.
Last month, during government protests, police took protesters into custody including 11 year old Ali Hasan. The young sixth grader was held in prison for a month and recently released pending a June 20 court appearance. His lawyer, Mohsen al-Alawi, successfully petitioned the court to allow him to return home where he could take his final exams and complete his school year.
The child is charged with participation in an illegal gathering and obstructing police in the execution of their duties. However, The Bahrain Centre for Human Rights claims the boy was merely playing near his home and only “confessed” to participation when he and his friends were offered three Dinars for their testimony.
The Bahrain Information Affairs Authority disputes that the boy was merely playing at the time of his arrest.