The mass trial underway of 84 Emiratis, including prominent human rights defenders, flagrantly violates the defendants’ fair trial rightsand disregards fundamental legal principle by re-trying some defendants for the same charges they were convicted of a decade ago, Amnesty International said ahead of a hearing in the case on 7 February.
At least 65 of the known defendants are already arbitrarily held – at least 62 of them since their previous mass trial in 2012-2013, the “UAE-94” case. Dozens continue to be held even though they have already completed their sentences in the UAE-94 case. Authorities accuse the defendants of establishing a “clandestine organization” for “terrorism”.
There have been multiple gross violations of the defendants’ fair trial rights, including authorities evidently directing witness testimony, the failure to disclose key details such as the exact charges or what articles of the law are being used to bring the charges, restrictions on lawyers sharing documents relating to the case with the defendants and their families, and barring family members from attending hearings during the trial, which began on 7 December 2023.
Read more: amnesty.org