Sharia (Islamic law) courts, which adjudicate criminal and family law, have the option of imposing flogging as punishment for adultery, prostitution, consensual premarital sex, pregnancy outside marriage, defamation of character, and drug or alcohol abuse.For example, local media reported that in March the Sharjah Sharia Court sentenced a Muslim student to receive 80 lashes for consuming liquor.The constitution prohibits such practices, but there were allegations that government officials employed torture.
According to the letters, guards subjected prisoners to beatings, electric shocks, and exposure to extremes of temperature while in solitary confinement.
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a federation of seven semiautonomous emirates with a resident population of approximately 9.2 million, of whom an estimated 11.5 percent are citizens.
The rulers of the seven emirates constitute the Federal Supreme Council, the country’s highest legislative and executive body.
The prisoners also alleged that guards threatened them with HIV infection, sexual abuse, death, or further torture for not admitting to charges.
In 2012 a Syrian national reported abuse prior to and during imprisonment after being arrested in 2011.