McGovern to Trump: Don’t do business with Bahrain’s monarchy

rep-mcgovernU.S. Congressman Jim McGovern (D-MA) is calling on President-elect Trump to stop doing business with foreign governments — including Bahrain’s monarchy.

In a letter (PDF) to the President-elect, Rep. McGovern raised serious concerns about the decision to host the Bahraini monarchy’s “national day” this Wednesday at the Trump International Hotel in Washington DC.

Rep. McGovern’s letter to President-elect Trump urges him to “take the following immediate steps:”

  • “Reject all business income from the Bahraini monarchy and any other foreign government.”
  • “Release all correspondence between the Bahraini monarchy and your businesses, including price negotiations and final contracts.”
  • “Release all correspondence between any foreign government and any of your businesses since you announced your campaign for president.”

From the letter:

“The American people deserve a president and White House that will act solely in our country’s interests, not those of any foreign government or business. Your private commercial dealings with repressive governments endanger this fundamental expectation of the president and deeply trouble many who care about human rights. I urge you to immediately and completely end your business dealings with the Bahraini and other foreign governments.”

Full letter text below:

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Briefing: Bahrain’s Fake Reform?

Briefing: Bahrain’s Fake Reform?

Bahrain’s Fake Reform? Human Rights Failures on the Eve of the Manama Dialogue

Thursday, Dec 1st, 2016
2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
402 Cannon House Office Building, Washington DC

 

Amnesty International
Americans for Democracy & Human Rights in Bahrain

RSVP to Avram Reisman (areisman@aiusa.org)

bahrain-map

Map data (c) 2016 Google, ORION-ME

 

In 2011, Bahrain convulsed with public protests and a bloody crackdown by the government. Amnesty International’s latest report on Bahrain documents how the human rights institutions announced by the King of Bahrain have failed to break the government’s long-standing culture of impunity.

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9 Questions for the U.S. Government on the Middle East:

Saudi Arabia:  U.S. intelligence cooperation

Is the U.S. providing intelligence to the Government of Saudi Arabia that can be used by Saudi Arabian authorities to violate the human rights of peaceful reformers and critics?

Saudi Arabia:  Prisoners of Conscience

What steps is the U.S. government taking to secure the release of prisoners of conscience like Raif Badawi from Saudi Arabia’s prisons?

Israel:  

What steps is the U.S. taking to prevent the Government of Israel from using U.S. arms to commit human rights violations against Palestinian civilians living under Israeli occupation?

Syria: Refugee resettlement

There are now 4 million Syrian refugees.  Over the last four years, the U.S. has only resettled a few hundred Syrian refugees.  How many Syrian refugees does the U.S. expect to permanently resettle in the U.S. in 2015?

Syria/Iraq:  U.S. military assistance

How will the U.S. prevent U.S. military assistance in Iraq and Syria from facilitating more war crimes and human rights abuses?
What steps is the U.S. taking to protect Sunni communities from abuses by Shi’a militias affiliated with the Iraqi government?

Syria/Iraq:  U.S. air strikes

Is the U.S. investigate reports of civilian casualties from U.S. air strikes in Syria and Iraq?

Will the U.S. publish the results of these investigations, hold accountable those responsible for civilian casualties, and provide reparations to families and survivors?

Bahrain:  U.S. arms sales

In 2012, the U.S. State Department announced that it would not allow the sale of arms to Bahrain “typically used by police and other security forces for internal security” or “crowd control.”  Has the U.S. resumed the sale of arms to Bahrain in this category?

Is the U.S. currently providing arms to Bahraini security forces that can be used against peaceful protestors and critics of the government?

Repressive U.S. allies in the Middle East: Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the battle against “Islamic State”

On Thursday, I spoke with CCTV America about Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and other repressive governments reported to be supporting U.S. actions against the armed group calling itself “Islamic State.”

Click to watch.

Interview - CCTV - 2014-09-25 - US allies and ISIS

Is Bahrain Hearing the World’s Advice? Join Me At A Talk About Human Rights in Bahrain

On Wednesday, I’ll be speaking about human rights in Bahrain at a DC panel organized by Americans for Democracy and Human Rights in Bahrain (ADHRB).

More info here, or see below:

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Under the Universal Periodic Review, every country in the world goes through a human rights review by its peers in the United Nations.  How has Bahrain fared under its review?  How well has Bahrain’s government implemented the recommendations of governments and civil society?

On Wednesday, I will get into the details when it comes to this repressive ally of the United States.

Saudi Arabia & Bahrain: 5 Members of Congress Urge President Obama to Push Saudi Officials to Support Reforms

U.S. Rep Hank Johnson and four other Members of Congress have written a letter to President Obama urging him to push Saudi Arabian officials to be “more constructive” regarding political reform in Bahrain.  The core sentence in the letter is the following:

Long-term stability in Bahrain can only be achieved through meaningful political reform, and we urge you to encourage the Saudi government to play a more constructive role in this regard.

Being “more constructive?”  That’s definitely an understatement. 

As my colleagues wrote in our April 2012 report, “Flawed Reforms Bahrain Fails To Achieve Justice For Protesters” (PDF): 

On 15 March 2011, Saudi Arabia sent at least 1,200 troops to Bahrain across the causeway linking the two states, reportedly at the request of the Bahraini government. The same day,the King of Bahrain declared a three-month state of emergency, known as the State of National Safety, and gave the security forces sweeping powers to arrest and detain protesters and ban all protests.