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16 November, 2006

Farewell Fahad

This is an extremely significant if very sad story:

Sharjah: A prisoner at Sharjah Central Jail has died from a suspected ruptured appendix, officials said, stressing that he repeatedly asked for medical help but was denied.

That a story like this has should actually be leaked by a Sharjah jail official, and go on to be printed in a local newspaper, signifies a deep shift in culture and attitudes. It probably helped that Gulf News is Dubai-based, not published out of Sharjah, but that makes it no less momentous.

A tide has turned. It turned for the unnamed official when he saw his colleagues allow a man to die in lonely agony in a foreign jail, for nothing more than a dud cheque:

"Fahad was very sick. He suffered severely from fever, stomach pains and vomiting.

He frequently cried out for help from his jailers and the jail authority but no help came to him. Fahad was given only painkillers. He pleaded to be taken to the hospital but his cries fell on deaf ears," he said.

The tide possibly also turned for whomever at Gulf News authorised this appalling, buck-passing, cowardly editorial over Human Rights Watch's criticism of the UAE just two days ago.

His name was Fahad, he was Syrian, he was in his thirties, and he died in unspeakable pain. But he will hopefully be the last person in the UAE to ever die like this.

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Blogger Dubai@Random said...

The US does a Human Trafficking Report early every year. It has three categories, 1, 2, and 3. '1' is good, '2' is average, and '3' is rotten. Almost all nations (except Western Europe) are '2'. Twice the UAE was a '3'. In 2005, the poor editor of Gulf News had to run an apoplectic editorial condemning the report without mentioning anything about it or its contents.

Now, in 2006, the local newspapers are allowed to mention all the contents of the HRW report as they write their apoplectic editorial.

At least that's progress.

16 November, 2006 06:50  
Blogger rosh said...

this is really sad. I can't believe this happened in Sharjah? I mean they do not treat prisoners inhumanely, this way.

i am so saddened with the loss of the poor man's life - may his soul rest in peace.

16 November, 2006 07:28  
Blogger rt said...

I dont understand how someone that got jailed for a dud cheque languishes in prisons and dies a disgraceful death, and those that are found guilty of gang rapes, get their jail terms reduced from the least of 3 years to 2 years and are deported back to their country. How does that work? Dud cheques (understandably a crime) versus rape (Several of them of late)...and there are many incidences of rape crimes, where the guilty end up having reduced sentences or lenient terms! Very heart wrenching!

16 November, 2006 10:32  
Blogger FaisaL said...

That is Unbelievable !!!

16 November, 2006 11:22  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

if you infidel kaffir foreigners don't like it then leave!!!!! allah will punish your decadent and western cultural imperialism!!!!! true muslims will go to heaven and watch you all burn in hell

16 November, 2006 11:29  
Blogger Woke said...

Sheikh Abdullah,
Give me a 'miss call' after you get there.
I have something for you.

That GN editorial was a pathetic attempt to tell the authorities that 'we are there for you no matter what the international media says'.

16 November, 2006 12:32  
Blogger dontfearfreedom said...

LOL @ Sheikh Mohammed Abdulla

Hell is where the prostitutes, bars and casinos will be.

16 November, 2006 12:44  
Blogger SIN said...

Why am I not surprised something like this happened to you Balushi :)

But on a serious note, it is heartbreaking the way Fahad died...which makes me curious...don't central jails have some form of medical facilities on the premises for inmates. Otherwise would they be transferring sometimes dangerous criminals to government hospitals....Balushi... you would know, as you worked there...

16 November, 2006 13:44  
Blogger LocalExpat said...

You think this is surprising? I have friends of mine who have been lashed (80 times) for an offence that would have not even raised an eyebrow in Dubai. Not to mention the holding cell they were placed in that was sooo crowded they had to sleep next to the over flowing toilet.

Sheikh Mohammed Abdulla...may I say something... HAHAHAHHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAH you crack me up... no I have to take you seriously hold on let me try one more time......hmmm..hmm..HAHAHAH sorry cant help it..

16 November, 2006 15:25  
Blogger Jassim said...

This is very very embarissing and glad Gulf News published something worthwhile 4 a difference

16 November, 2006 15:51  
Blogger Al Pashtuno said...

i waiting for ur comment u busturd if u change ur name to sheaik whatever i will catch u man.

16 November, 2006 16:55  
Blogger click_310 said...

Sheikh Mohammed Abdulla you are right, the believers will go to heaven. Unfortunately your wish that the others die an immediate fiery death, will lead you to join us in hell.

Its people like you that give your religion a bad name. Whatever happened to the religion of peace and tolerance.

PS: Am hoping that its just a troll who started a blogger account to spread hatred.

Just my 2¢'s

16 November, 2006 20:11  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"We arrived(in Sharjah) to find a feud had been raging. An ex shaikh of Sharjah had abortively attacked his successor in office. The latter had celebrated his success by drawing red hot needles accross the eyes of 6 hapless prisoners, an operation which killed one and blinded the rest for life." Bertram Thomas, 1927
Judge for yourselves whether things have improved much since then.

16 November, 2006 22:26  
Blogger Earthbound Misfit said...

Read the gulf news editorial accusing the HRW report of inaccuracy. Ever notice how any report that is negative is automatically accused of inaccuracy and bias? But they never ever back up their own claims with any data.

The really funny bit - "report could have been received positively, judged reasonably and reviewed fairly if it had simply been studied scientifically and argued logically. "

This from the same people who give prayers for rain and believe in Jinns.

16 November, 2006 23:27  
Blogger Photograph Abu Dhabi said...

The most tedious and annoying thing about Gulf News is when they take about 8 lines at a time when they mention a Sheikh and follow it up his position within the country, head of which faction. We know who Sheikh Mohammed and Khalifa are without having to fill us in with 8 paragraphs of information as well. Morons.

17 November, 2006 00:13  
Blogger click_310 said...

LiamWe know who Sheikh Mohammed and Khalifa are without having to fill us in with 8 paragraphs of information as well. Morons.
Thats called protocol. Although I agree that its a waste of Ink and paper.

From this day onwards you shall be known as Liam the Grand Wizard of Deira with magical traffic defeating powers and a blackberry :)

17 November, 2006 09:52  
Blogger The kaapi editor said...

Horrible things happen to people who don't follow protocol. One error and everybody from sub to editor-in-chief gets it in the neck.

17 November, 2006 10:09  
Blogger Sex and Dubai said...

The point is someone had the balls to blow the whistle on the idignant jailers.

And someone had the balls of steel to get it printed. Heads will roll in the process and public outcry to follow - but atleast people are talking and paying attention to it now.

Yes SD, the tide is slowly beginning to change - let's hope we aren't all in for a tsunami.

17 November, 2006 10:54  
Blogger Jassim said...

Lol...the funniest thing about people who leave comments on SD's site and alot of other big forums is how easily they can be baited for a responce:

Sheikh Mohammed Abdulla is so clearly a troll looking for some attention but still at least six people here replied to his comments. Sometimes I really think someone is poisoning the country's water supply brain cell destroying chemicals.

17 November, 2006 12:15  
Blogger Arab Lady said...

The Prisons in the Arab countries is full of stories like Fahad’s. I wonder of the word human right has any value in our countries…shame on them!

18 November, 2006 14:54  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes the GN editorial was towing the company line, but you have to read between the lines.

Which paper published the Sharjah story? Which paper published the HRW accusations in full?

You have to remember the environment you are working under and then judge accordingly.

In the light of what has happened at 7days, perhaps people will realise you can't just 'push the boundaries' all the time

23 November, 2006 11:01  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sharjah police is a group of thugs, nothing more nothing less. They don't care about human rights and prisoners are tortured on routine basis. Torture in Sharjah police is considered part of the investigation and prisoners are taken to torture room blindfolded so that they do not know they attackers. Fuck sharjah and its facist regime.

25 November, 2006 11:14  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What is it about life here in the middle east that so beguiles us and causes us to remain silent in the face of such appalling treatment of our fellow human beings whose rights in UAE are routinely/frequently trampled underfoot in the interest of of even more imorally aquired wealth/profits for the select few. What goes around comes around!!

26 November, 2006 23:52  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sao Juano

Im getting the image that in 10 years sharjah will be almost related to a ghetto like city :O and the cops will be like Oakland PD

01 December, 2006 11:48  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Shaikh Abdullah,

I'm a muslim, but if I find your-like in heaven, I'd much rather be thrown in hell.
What a shame!

23 December, 2006 22:50  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

have a look at at least someones raising the point of the legal system in UAE

17 August, 2007 22:45  
Blogger Sohail said...

I've spent 70 days in Sharjah central Jail. Despite that , that I proved myself not guilty and judge of Sharia court gave me the release order but 'Nayaba' bypass the judge's order. I saw severe kind of Human Right's violation in Sharjah jail.One of the worst kind.

16 August, 2009 16:48  

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