Ottawa man released from Bahrain jail

Ottawa man Naser Al Raas was released from Bahrain jail Monday, following his arrest during a Feb. 1 court appearance.

“We’re happy he’s out,” his brother in Ottawa, Sadeq Al Raas, told the Sun. “But at the same time, I’m not sure what will happen with the decision.”

The judge granted the release due to Al Raas’ poor health.

He has lung and heart problems and takes anti-clotting medication daily.

“Until (Monday) he didn’t have anything,” said Sadeq Al Raas.

Naser Al Raas, 29, attended a rally during the revolution in Bahrain almost one year ago and doesn’t have his passport.

He’s now facing a five-year prison term following a conviction in civilian court for “gathering” and “spreading false news.”

Al Raas recently lost an appeal.

His next court date is Feb. 16.

Minister of State of Foreign Affairs Diane Ablonczy took to Twitter Monday, re-tweeting the message “Pleased to learn that Mr. Al-Raas was released from detention, pending a decision on his appeal.”

Ablonczy’s spokesman John Babcock said Canada “continues to provide consular assistance to Mr. Al-Raas and his family and will be following his case closely.”


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