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Oman: Update – Sentencing of Mr Mukhtar Al-Hana'i and trials of other human rights defenders adjourned
On 16 September 2012, the Criminal Court of First Instance in Muscat sentenced human rights defender Mr Mukhtar Al-Hana'i to one year in prison and a fine of 1,000 Omani Riyals (approximately 1,980 Euros) on charges of insulting the Sultan Qaboos and violating the information technology law.
Meanwhile, the court adjourned the trials of Messrs Khulfan Al-Badawawi, Khalid Al-Nawfali, Sultan Al-Sa'di, Hatim Al-Maliki and Mohammed Al-Fazari until 14 October 2012. The court also adjourned the trials of Mr Hamoud Al-Rashidi and Mr Hamad Al-Kharousi until 24 October. For further information on the ongoing judicial harassment of these and other human rights defenders in Oman, please see the Front Line Defenders urgent appeal and most recent update, dated 15 June 2012 and 11 September 2012 respectively: Wave of arbitrary arrests and detention of human rights defenders, and Sentencing of several human rights defenders and trials of others adjourned.
Front Line Defenders condemns the ongoing judicial harassment of the aforementioned human rights defenders and peaceful protesters, and believes that it is directly related to their legitimate activities in the defence of human rights.
Front Line Defenders calls on the Omani authorities to immediately quash the conviction of Mukhtar Al-Hana'i and to drop all charges stemming from the legitimate exercise of the rights to freedom of assembly and expression.