Recommendation 1718

To amend the decree establishing the NSA to ensure that the organisation is an intelligence gathering agency without law enforcement and arrest authorities. The NSA should also have an independent office of inspector general to carry out the same internal "ombudsman" functions mentioned above with respect to the MoI. Legislation should be adopted to provide that even during the application of a State of National Safety the arrest of persons should be in accordance with the Code of Criminal Procedure

Status

Decree #115 of 2011 cancels the NSA's arrest power, which it was granted in Decree #117 of 2008. This constitutes a partial implementation of the recommendation.

On 28 February 2012, the King issued a decree setting up an ombudsman's office inside the NSA. It does not seem that there is a requirement that the ombudsman be someone from outside the NSA.

While the government claims to have approved legislative amendments on 8 January 2012 regarding arrests during a State of National Safety, there do not appear to be any such amendments published in the Official Gazette after that date.

Government Claim

(source: www.govactions.bh on 3/3/2012)

(a) was implemented by Decree on 28 November 2011. As a result of this decree, the NSA is an intelligence gathering agency with no law enforcement and arrest powers.

(b) the External Legal Experts (see recommendation 1716) have advised on the establishment of the independent inspector general, and have drafted the decree, which was issued on 28 February 2012.

On (c), in response to the request of the National Commission dated 14 December 2011, the cabinet approved legislative amendments that ensure that even in the state of national safety, arrests of persons will be in accordance with the Code of Criminal Procedure.

Recommendation 1718
Revoke NSA arrest power, create an office of Inspector General in the NSA, adopt legislation clarifying that Code of Criminal Procedure applies during a State of National Safety
Status: Partial
Government claim: Implemented

Summary:

  • Implementation Royal Decree cancels arrest power of NSA introduced in 2008 decree expanding NSA's power
  • Implementation Decree establishing an ombudsman's office published, but concerns about independence
  • Inaction Legislative amendments approved on 8 January 2012 have not yet been published in the Official Gazette