Dubai: Human Rights Watch on Sunday slammed a United Arab Emirates court decision to acquit the brother of the UAE President of torture and said the Gulf state`s reputation had been "sullied”.
A report by the New York-based watchdog also criticised the Emirati court that cleared Sheikh Issa bin Zayed al-Nahayan of charges of torturing an Afghan trader in 2004, for failing to provide written reasons for its decision "even though it found all his accomplices guilty”.
"If the UAE government really wants to stop torture and to restore its sullied reputation, it has much to do, especially in light of Sheikh Issa`s acquittal," said Joe Stork, deputy director of HRW Middle East division.
"The government needs to set in motion significant institutional reforms and to make certain that human rights violations are punished," he said in a statement released at a Dubai news conference during which HRW released its annual report on rights developments in the UAE, Iran, Iraq and Bahrain.
Sheikh Issa is the brother of the UAE President and ruler of oil-rich Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahayan. He was acquitted by an Emirati court on January 10 of any wrongdoing.