Monday, December 31, 2018

Ten years for activist in UAE

An United Arab Emirates (UAE) appeals court has upheld a 10-year prison sentence against prominent pro-democracy activist Ahmed Mansoor for criticising the government on social media, Amnesty International reported. The father of four was also handed a fine of one million dirham (270.000 dollar). 
Mansoor, an electrical engineer and poet, was arrested in March 2017 and sentenced in May by Abu Dhabi's Federal Appeals Court for "defaming the UAE through social media channels".
Mansoor was among five activists convicted and later pardoned for insulting the UAE's rulers in 2011.He was arrested again in March 2017 at his home in Ajman. The charges were publishing false information and rumours, and promoting a sectarian and hate-incited agenda.
Several international rights groups, including the United Nations human rights bodies, Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, and the European Union Parliament Subcommittee on Human Rights have condemned the sentencing of Mansoor earlier this year.
Responding to Monday's decision by the court to uphold Mansoor's sentence, Amnesty's Middle East Research director, Lynn Maalouf said that the decision proves "there is no space for freedom [of] expression in the United Arab Emirates". 

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