It was until Monday when Bahraini martyr Salah Al-Balladiâ€™s family was allowed to receive the body of its son who was killed by the Bahraini security forces on the eve of Formula One race.
Speaking to the martyrâ€™s cousin, Ali Qattan, Al-Manar website learned that this was the second martyr in the family who was killed during protests, as 16-year-old Ahmad Qattan was also killed a couple of months ago in a protest in Abu Saiba region.
â€œMartyr Salah was the one who carried martyr Ahmadâ€™s body, and he was the one who washed him, dug his grave, and buried him,â€ Ali said, pointing out that â€œSalah was the first witness on the killing of Ahmad, but in Bahrain, no witness dares to present his testimony because he would be the next targetâ€¦ only a few days after the testimony, he will be thrown into jail.â€
On Salahâ€™s case, Ali told Al-Manar website that the family was prevented from examining the body of Salah at first.
â€œThey (security apparatuses) did not allow us, and when the family and the neighbors gathered, they began shooting and throwing tear bombs,â€ he said, adding that â€œafter they claimed that the measures were completed and after the insistence of the family, his brother was permitted to look only at the face of martyr Salah to identify himâ€¦ we received the body 48 hours after the crime.â€
Moreover, Ali indicated that â€œthe coronerâ€™s certificate asserted that Salahâ€™s death was the result of using (the internationally forbidden) fission shotgun against him.â€
He stressed that â€œthe Interior ministry will disavow this certificate which convicts the security forces, just as it did before,â€ knowing that in the case of Ahmad Qattan, the Interior Ministry issued a statement claiming that the bullets in Ahmadâ€™s body did not match the kind used by the Bahraini security forces.
Ali Qattan: Authority Holds Responsibility, We have no Trust in It
Ali stated that â€œthe body examination as well as witnessesâ€™ testimonies revealed that the martyr was moving away and avoiding any clash with the security forces when there was gunfire, just like most of the protestors were doing. Yet, the security forces kept on chasing the protestors and arrested five of them after severely beating them.â€
â€œThey also chased martyr Salah and another protestor and fired fission shotguns at them, which led to the Salahâ€™s intense bleeding and martyrdom.â€
The martyrâ€™s cousin pointed out that the security forces have intensified measures against protestors since the preparations for the Formula One race began, in attempt to prevent demonstrations.
â€œPhotographers could see the demonstrations, and this would distort the image that the regime is trying to present as the defender of human rights,â€ he considered.
In conclusion, Ali said that â€œwe demand punishing the criminals, and of course the political and security authorities are behind this crimeâ€¦ even though we have no faith that the authority intends to attain justice or punish any killer.â€
â€œThe martyrsâ€™ families see that the political societiesâ€™ demands are the basis for any political solution,â€ he assured.
Translated by Sara Taha Moughnieh