Teachers Demonstrating in Bahrain earlier this Year Two of the leaders of the Bahraini Teachers Association (BTA) are appealing today against their jail sentences The teachers' leaders, Jalila al-Salman and Mahdi 'Issa Mahdi Abu Dheeb, were given three and ten year sentence by a military court. The President of the union was tortured in prison.Another nine leaders of the BTA are facing criminal charges because of their involvement with the strikes and protests against the unelected Bahraini regime. The Bahrain Teachers Association was prominent in the pro-democracy movement in Bahrain. Teachers went on strike at the beginning of the protests and since that time they and their students have been under sustained attack. There were reports of children being pulled from buses by security forces helped by the Saudi militaryand beaten up if they did not have the picture of the King of Bahrain in their textbooks. Meanwhile Western governments – like the US and the UK – who pay lip service to democracy when it fits with their interests - continue to do business with Bahrain. The Financial Times reports that a defence pact between Bahrain and the US, which was due to be renewed this month, has been extended to 2016 . It reports a senior US official as saying: “Bahrain is a long-standing partner and ally, and we are publicly and privately committed to that partnership.” The US has military bases inside the country. Many teachers have been dismissed and replaced by unqualified teachers or teachers from other countries. EI is calling for the reinstatement of all teachers, the dropping of all charges against teachers and the release of the leaders of the BTA. To read more about the case and to send a message of support go to: http://www.ei-ie.org/en/news/news_details/2033