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FOI Request Reveals Injustice to British Females in UAE Jails

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FOI Request Reveals Injustice to British Females in UAE Jails

A Freedom of Information request was recently published by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office detailing the number of British females currently jailed in the UAE and subjected to torture. The request asked: 

“1) The number of female UK nationals who have complained that they have been subjected to torture or mistreatment whilst being detained in police stations or prisons within the United Arab Emirates, within the last five years. 

2) The number of female UK nationals who have complained that they have been prevented from having access to a defence lawyer whilst detained in police stations or prisons within the United Arab Emirates, within the last five years. 

3) The number of female UK nationals who have complained that they have not received a fair trial when being prosecuted within the United Arab Emirates, within the last five years.” 

The answer stated:

"The FCO Consular Directorate is aware of allegations made by 28 British nationals of torture and mistreatment in UAE prisons, police stations or detention centres between September 2011 and the date of your question. In some of these cases a formal complaint to the Emirati authorities was not made as the detainee did not want to take it further." 

"We cannot provide a breakdown of this figure by gender as the figure for women is less than 6 and we are not obliged under the Data Protection Act 1998 to disclose this information as set out below". 

"I am not able to provide figures for either the number of women who have complained they have been prevented from having access to a lawyer, or for those who have complained that they have not received a fair trial as to do so would require a manual search of approximately 1,350 case files, which is the number of our individual arrest/detention cases in UAE to date since 1 August 2011. This would exceed the cost limit for the reasons set out below."

 

Read the FOI request here: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/601026/0872-16_Letter_07.03.17.pdf 

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