The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a partnership of the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT) and FIDH, requests your urgent intervention in the following situation in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Description of the situation:
The Observatory has been informed by reliable sources about the arrest and detention in a secret location of Mr. Ahmed Mansoor, member of the Advisory Board of the Gulf Centre for Human Rights(GCHR) and 2015 Laureate of the Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders.
According to the information received, on March 20, 2017 around midnight, Mr. Ahmed Mansoor was arrested at his home in Ajman by alleged members of UAE security forces, including 10 men and two women, and taken to an unknown location.
As of publishing this Urgent Appeal, the reason for his arrest and his whereabouts remain unknown. It is fearead that his arrest might be linked to a series of tweets he posted on Twitter in recent days, calling for the release of Emirati human rights defender Osama Al-Najjar or to a letter that he signed, along with other activists in the region, calling for the release of all prisoners of conscience in the Middle East ahead of an Arab League Summit scheduled to be held in Jordan on March 29, 2017.
The Observatory expresses its concern regarding the arbitrary arrest and secret detention of Mr. Ahmed Mansoor, and fears that he may be at risk of torture and other ill-treatment, due to previous accusations of alleged use of torture and ill treatment by State Security Authority against detainees held in secret locations.
The Observatory calls upon the UAE authorities to guarantee in all circumstances Mr. Ahmed Mansoor’s physical and psychological integrity, as well as to release him immediately and unconditionally, since his detention is arbitrary as it seems to only aim at curtailing his peaceful human rights activities.
This update (excerpt) was published on the OMCT's website on March 20, 2017.