Arab States Isolation of Qatar Causing Human Rights Abuses
The isolation of Qatar by Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates is causing serious human rights abuses, Human Rights Watch said in a press release.
"The isolation of Qatar by Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is precipitating serious human rights violations," the release said Wednesday. "It is infringing on the right to free expression, separating families, interrupting medical care – in one case forcing a child to miss a scheduled brain surgery, interrupting education, and stranding migrant workers without food or water."
On June 5, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt cut off relations with Qatar and imposed travel restrictions on the country.
The four countries later issued a list of 13 demands to Doha for ending the blockade, including shutting down Al-Jazeera, downgrading diplomatic relations with Iran and paying Arab states reparations for "financial losses" incurred by Qatar's foreign policies.
Qatar rejected the demands, saying they were unreasonable.
Human Rights Watch said it has documented at least 50 cases of rights violations against citizens from Qatar, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, as well as 70 migrant workers living in Qatar, resulting from the restrictions.
The rights group added that it had documented 480 cases of family separation since the blockade was imposed.