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In 2011, 52 physicians and nurses were arrested by the Bahrain government for providing medical services to anti-government demonstrators and accused of felonies, 20 of whom were convicted and sentenced by Bahraini military court to between 5 and 15 years after a trial lasting a few minutes.
Many of the health care workers were reportedly tortured and forced to sign confessions. Following international pressure, Bahrain’s Attorney General overturned the sentences and ordered retrials. Hearings took place in January-April 2012 before the civilian High Criminal Court of Appeal. On April 19 the case was adjourned until April 26 to hear the defence.
In addition to those who have been arrested, many Bahraini health care workers have been dismissed, suspended, demoted and discriminated against and many health care professionals have been denied the ability to practise their profession.