Sinn Féin spokesperson on Foreign Affairs, Pádraig Mac Lochlainn, TD, has called on the Royal College of Surgeons Ireland (RCSI) and other medical organisations in Ireland to immediately issue a statement clarifying their ongoing business relationship with the state of Bahrain.
A growing number of health professionals and human rights organisations in Ireland have expressed grave concern about the worsening human rights situation in Bahrain, including the arrest and detention of doctors trained in Ireland by the RCSI.
Deputy Mac Lochlainn said: “There is growing concern in Ireland that the integrity of the medical profession is being undermined by the refusal of the RCSI and other medical organisations to publicly condemn or even express concern about the arrest and detention of doctors in Bahrain for carrying out their professional and life saving duties.
“Suggestions by the RCSI that they are raising the concerns of other health professionals and human rights organisations in Ireland through ‘back channels’ in Bahrain maybe well-intentioned but ultimately this is unacceptable.
“There can be no further ambiguity on these matters. It is totally wrong for the RCSI to continue to do business with the State of Bahrain and extending the international reputation and credibility of the RCSI to that State at a time when the ruling regime of Bahrain have abducted doctors for doing their job.”
The Donegal deputy said the people of Bahrain have an absolute entitlement to protest for their religious and democratic rights without having to endure state repression.
Yesterday ten prominent Shia activists and opposition leaders were sentenced to life imprisonment for asserting those rights.
TD MacLochlainn added: “The RCSI and other medical organisations must now add their voice to the growing list of human rights organisations in Ireland and internationally. They must put the reputation of the Irish medical profession before commerce.”