On International Human Rights Day, Lawyers for Lawyers alongside the International Center for Justice and Human Rights (ICJHR) and 7 other signatories, called on the UAE authorities to immediately release and human rights lawyer and defender Dr. Mohammed Al-Roken.
Eight years have passed since the unjust arrest of Dr. Mohammed Al-Roken by the UAE State Security services. On July 2, 2013, the Federal Supreme Court convicted and sentenced Dr. Al-Roken to 10 years imprisonment with additional administrative control measures and forbade him from practicing his profession as a lawyer. He has been denied the basic right to a fair trial and his enforced disappearance, torture and ill-treatment was never investigated. On November 22, 2013, the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention issued an opinion recognizing the arbitrary nature of the detention of Dr. Al-Roken and 60 other defendants in the ‘UAE94’ trial (A/HRC/WGAD/2013/60).
Dr. Al-Roken is a prominent Emirati human rights defender and lawyer, and the former President of the Emirates Jurists Association. In recognition of his courageous human rights work, Dr. Al-Roken was awarded the 2017 Ludovic-Trarieux International Human Rights Prize.
Dr. Al-Roken was arrested on July 17, 2012 as part of the massive crackdown of the ‘UAE94 Group’, and he was charged with conspiracy against the government, after calling for political reforms in the country and signing an online reform petition in March 2011 to demand an elected national council with full supervisory and legislative powers. Following his arrest, Dr. Al-Roken was detained in solitary confinement at an undisclosed location for 8 months, without access to his lawyer and his family.