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Fri 1 Jun 2012 09:26 AM

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US says concerned about former Deyaar CEO

US counsel general in UAE worried about health of hunger striker Zack Shahin

US says concerned about former Deyaar CEO
Former Deyaar CEO Zack Shahin. (ITP Images)

The United States is concerned about the health of an American businessman who has been on hunger strike at a Dubai prison for more than two weeks, the US embassy has said.

Zack Shahin, a US citizen accused of embezzlement while at the helm of Deyaar, was arrested in 2008 after a corruption investigation. He has been on hunger strike since May 14, an embassy statement said.

"We are gravely concerned about Mr Shahin's health after more than two weeks on hunger strike," said Justin Siberell, the US counsel general in UAE after visiting Shahin.

Shahin has not been formally charged.

"The handling of his case also causes concern about whether Mr Shahin is receiving equal treatment as measured against defendants accused of financial crimes in the UAE," said Siberell.

Last month four other expatriates jailed in Dubai said they were among a group of prisoners who have gone on hunger strike to protest against lengthy prison sentences handed down to most of them for financial crimes.

The men, most of them real estate developers and businessmen working in Dubai during its economic boom years, fell into debt when the emirate's property bubble burst after the 2008 global credit crisis.

Clean in Kuwait 7 years ago

Do the crime and serve the time !

More real estate developers need to be locked up.

Peter 7 years ago

He ought to be treated fairly and tried in court, if he has indeed commited a crime.

confused 7 years ago

Am I reading this right?
He has been sitting in jail since 2008 and not charged with anything?

Nirsly 7 years ago

US should be concerned with detainees in Guantanamo who have been there for so long without being charged and who will face a secret trial. Hypocrisy.

confused 2 7 years ago

@nirsly
and since when did two wrongs make one right?
Very sad.

Solly 7 years ago

Absolutely right Nirsly. The barefaced cheek of the US for remarking on this case when they possess the Guantanamo travesty is beyond belief.... well ... it SHOULD be beyond belief, but US politics puts even this in the context of "normal".

Nirsly 7 years ago

@confused
Since two negatives make a positive.

unconfused 7 years ago

I don't think Nirsly was suggesting that two wrongs make a right; only that the perpetrator of one of the wrongs (coincidentally the much larger one in this case) is the LAST person to have the right to criticise. The moral high ground cannot be occupied by hypocrites.

Anwar Kutty 7 years ago

Where are you seeing 2 wrongs? Everyone knows he is guilty, otherwise why will he be kept without being charged? I think it is high time we start thinking of real issues in the world instead of shedding tears for people who are clearly criminals