Rights group calls for prosecution of UAE royal for torture

Rights group calls for prosecution of UAE royal for torture Cairo - An international human rights group on Tuesday accused a member of the United Arab Emirates' royal family of brutally torturing an Afghan man and called for his prosecution. The New York-based pressure group Human Rights Watch on Tuesday accused Sheikh Issa bin-Zayed al-Nahyan, a member of the Emirati royal family, of beating, electrocuting, and driving over an Afghan grain dealer.

A videotape aired on the US news channel ABC last week showed al-Nayhan and policemen beating Mohammed Shah Poor with whips and wooden planks with protruding nails last fall, pouring salt on his wounds, then running him over with a car in the desert, the rights group said.

"The government's failure to prosecute those involved in this undisputed incident of torture and abuse at the hands of a royal family member and the police is an appalling miscarriage of justice," said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch.

The group said it had seen a letter from the Emirati Interior Ministry calling the incident "an assault" that those involved had settled "privately."

According to Human Rights Watch, the ministry told the news channel that an investigation had shown that police "followed all rules, policies and procedures correctly." (dpa)