Bahrain sets up hotline to track violence as it names ten suspects

August 31, 2010

Bahrain’s interior ministry set up a hotline to encourage people to assist in tracking down suspects or preventing violence as it named ten people allegedly involved in acts of sabotage and assault .

The ministry said in a statement that the two of the suspects were involved in the assault on Muhannad Abu Zeitoun, the managing editor of Al Watan daily. The duo attacked the 31-year-old Palestinian on August 25 as he was leaving the newspaper offices in East Riffa with a sharp object and tried to torch his car. They were remanded in custody for 60 days.

Two other suspects were arrested for their alleged role in starting a fire in a scrap yard that took days to extinguish.

The police said that three of the suspects were involved in damaging the Sitra Power Station tower on August 20 and causing power cuts in many parts of the Central Governorate. Only one suspect was arrested and the other two are on the run.

Three other suspects were arrested and named for their alleged involvement in setting fire to the same station on July 8.

All the suspects, whose pictures were published by six of the seven dailies in Arabic and English, have been referred to the Public Prosecution, the interior ministry said.

In a statement carried by Bahrain News Agency on Monday evening, Shaikh Rashid Bin Abdullah Al Khalifa, the interior minister, reiterated a zero-tolerance pledge towards acts of sabotage and vandalism and warned of a tough clamp on street violence.

Justice and Islamic Affairs Minister Shaikh Khalid Bin Ali Al Khalifa also on Monday evening said that people’s security was “a red line.”

“It will never be subject to barter or a matter of politeness,” he told representatives from the political societies. “All citizens and NGOs should assume the responsibility of increasing awareness about the threats of violence and sabotage to security and stability.”

Bahrain has witnessed a wave of clashes between rioters and security police following the arrest on August 13 of Haq Movement spokesman Abdul Jalil Al Singace and supporters. The authorities said they had gathered information about the existence of a network seeking to undermine Bahrain’s security and stability.

Arrested under the terror law, Al Singace was presented to the public prosecutor on August 26. However, a gag order prevents the media from reporting on his case.

Under the law, a suspect could be held for up to 15 days before a public prosecutor starts looking into his case.



About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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