Minister withdraws case

The case is (almost) over.

Thanks to the sincere efforts of a lot of people in trying to get this case resolved amicably, principally by my lawyer Ms. Fatima Al-Hawaj who has been assigned to the case by the Bahrain Journalists Association, but various friends and colleagues and well wishers, the minister has agreed to drop the libel case against me.

I have met with the minister at his office this afternoon in the presence of Ms. Al-Hawaj, the ministry’s legal consultant and other officials at the ministry in which I have expressed my apology for hurting his feelings by using what could be interpreted as harsh words in my criticism in the original article. I have explained to the minister that those words were probably fueled by an over-reaction to the news report on my part and offered to change them to something more polite.

The minister’s lawyer should be present in court on the 8th and officially submit the reconciliation agreement and officially withdraw the case.

I wish to extend my sincere thanks to everyone who stood by me in this: The Bahrain Centre for Human Rights, the Bahrain Journalists Association, the Bahrain Journalists Union, the Bahrain Human Rights Society, the Bahrain Youth Society for Human Rights, Reporters without Borders, Ahmed Al-Aradi and the many many friends who lent their unwavering support.

I would also like to especially thank Adel Marzooq, the vice president of the Bahrain Journalists Association for his support and council and of course to Ms. Fatima Al-Hawaj for all her efforts.

Thank you once again.


  1. Anon

    There is a bigger issue here. The Press Law needs to be amended, the populace needs to be informed, and the lack of correlation between the constitution and the Law needs to be exposed.

    A free press is one important facet of a well functioning democracy. Be careful of the ‘right to bear arms’ though…

  2. Peter


    “I have expressed my apology for hurting his feelings by using what could be interpreted as harsh words in my criticism ”

    Reminds me of the way Jyllandsposten and the danish government apologized during the cartoon-fiasco.

    I´m not trying to insult anyone here 🙂

  3. Romster

    Polite words !!!!! (I finally got to use an exclamation mark…my wife spelled that for me).
    polite |pəˈlīt| adjective ( -liter , -litest ) having or showing behavior that is respectful and considerate of other people : they thought she was wrong but were too polite to say so.
    Dude, just pay the BD 50 ticket and let the guy suck on a lemon.

  4. أبو الكلام

    Let’s see if the court would not prosecute, because he (or was it the GOB?) can drop their own (the tort) part only.

    Once the DPP has placed the charges before the court, it cannot drop it, excepting in very few cases involving crimes like insist and the likes which need the victim to complain in the first place, whose withdrawal of his/her part also drops the criminal part of the offence involved.

    My guess is that the court would (if it so desires to produce the outcome we all hope for; and, given the execuse that the minister (GOB) dropped their part), would reserve the case for judgement and subsequently dismiss the charges. Otherwise, it can be unfriendly too, if it so wishes.

  5. sairafi

    Great news!

    We’re all glad it’s in its final stages and hope to hear the official case withdrawal :biggrin:

  6. Post
  7. milter

    That’s happy news for both you and your family. I’ll keep my fingers crossed.

  8. Ali

    Take off the mask, Mahmood! And no.. I ain’t gonna design a new one. I’d rather use the same mask for my case. After all, it did make the point 😉

  9. Post
  10. Post

    Ali, thanks for that once again. It is very apt.

    I see that is open at the moment, does that mean that the final agreement has been reached and the block lifted?

  11. Barry

    Hey, this is awesome, Mahmood!

    In that picture, I see a bright pop of blue amongst a sea of grays, blues and neutrals, is that Ms. Al-Hawaj?

  12. Maverick

    Congratulations Mahmood.
    You said your piece and got away with it. 😉
    I always felt that you should have done this in the begining i.e. taking face to face. I am glad that it was done through proper mediation of legal authorities. Perhaps what you could do is to encourage the ministry to have grievances number or email that is actually monitored and used to help people with problems. This is a relatively small country with enough of a work force to tackle small problems. If there is money to build financial harbours why can’t water drainage trucks be purchased to match the needs of the country?
    :happy: :whistle:

  13. Post

    Ali, what other domains are blocked? I’ll add to the list on the right. We (bloggers, forum moderators) should draft a letter of objection to the Ministry, issue a statement to the press and raise a case against both the Ministry of Information, BIX and Batelco to unblock these sites, all of them.

  14. Pingback: Global Voices Online » Bahrain: Case Against Blogger to be Dropped

  15. M

    Hopefully the minister won’t back off again and change his mind like last time. Could not be more pleased for you and your family, Mahmood. Hopefully, Bahrain will be stronger for the ordeal you and your family have had to endure and that others will feel empowered to join with your voice for the good of all the people of Bahrain. It’s a great start.

  16. Lujayn

    Congrats Mahmood! I suspect we’re going to be doing a lot more of these exchanges, as you always seem to find a way to get under some poor official’s skin :biggrin:

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