Man arrested in UAE for wearing Qatar shirt launches legal claim

  • 9 months   ago
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Man arrested in UAE for wearing Qatar shirt launches legal claim

A football fan from Wolverhampton has launched a legal challenge against the UAE after he was detained and tortured after wearing a Qatar football shirt on a holiday, according to a report in The Guardian.

Ali Issa Ahmad, 26, a security guard, says he was arrested, interrogated and detained while on holiday in UAE after watching an Asian Cup football match in January. He says that during his detention he was beaten, electrocuted, cut and burned and questioned repeatedly about why he was wearing a Qatari football shirt in UAE.

Ahmad is bringing a human rights claim against the UAE government for the physical harm he suffered, which he hopes to fund with a CrowdJustice campaign.

According to information on the Foreign Office (FCO) website, it is an offence to promote Qatar in UAE and doing so can attract a large fine and imprisonment.

Ahmad’s lawyers are calling on the Foreign Office to launch a full investigation into what happened to him during his trip and wrote to the foreign secretary, Jeremy Hunt, on Wednesday, urging him to take action.

 

Ahmad says he was forced to sign a confession saying he was guilty of wasting police time with the incident.

Ahmad had travelled to the UAE for a holiday in January. While he was there he got a ticket for an Asian Cup match between Qatar and Iraq on January 22. The Arsenal fan wore a Qatar shirt to the match, not knowing that doing so is an offence in the UAE.

Ahmad returned to the UK with a series of knife wounds to his arm, injuries to his chest and a stab wound to his side. He said that a security official had knocked out a tooth when he punched him in the face.

He added that he was deprived of sleep, food and water for several days while he was interrogated, before being transferred to a police cell in Sharjah where he was held until February 12. He said he was stabbed in the side one night in the police cell, which he was forced to share with 18 other people.

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