President Obama attended a meeting of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC) that took place last week.
Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, and the United Arab Emirates being concerned with the nuclear threat Iran may pose, required some security assurances to their countries. Obama in its turn asserted he would not lift sanctions, unless Iran closed up its nuclear program. Moreover, the US President promised to provide every assistance including US military force to any "external threat" the countries may face.
Amnesty International has meanwhile published human rights abuses registered in each of those countries.
In Saudi Arabia, "torture of detainees was reportedly common; courts convicted defendants on the basis of torture-tainted "confessions" and sentenced others to flogging."
In Kuwait, "authorities used a telecommunications law to prosecute and imprison critics who expressed dissent using social media, and curtailed the right to public assembly."
In Bahrain, "security forces used excessive force to disperse protests, killing at least two people. Opposition activists sentenced after unfair trials in previous years continued to be held, including prisoners of conscience. Torture of detainees continued and a climate of impunity prevailed."
In Qatar, "migrant workers remained inadequately protected under the law and were exploited and abused. Women faced discrimination and violence. The authorities restricted freedom of expression and courts failed to uphold fair trial standards."
In Oman, "state authorities continued to restrict freedom of expression, including in the media and online. Freedom of assembly was not permitted. Several government critics were detained and held incommunicado for some weeks."
In the United Arab Emirates, "the government restricted the rights to freedom of expression and association, and prosecuted critics using provisions of the Penal Code and the 2012 cybercrimes law. Prisoners of conscience continued to be held after unfair trials in which courts accepted evidence allegedly obtained through torture and other violations of their rights."
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