Qatar frees 15 Bahraini fishermen

September 1, 2010
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Qatar’s Emir has pardoned 15 Bahraini amateur fishermen who had been held in Doha for straying into Qatari waters.

The decision to free the Bahrainis was made following an intervention from the Emir of Kuwait, Qatar News Agency (QNA) said.

“Shaikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani ordered the pardon of all the Bahraini prisoners for entering Qatari waters in response to a request by Kuwait’s Emir Shaikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah,” QNA said on Tuesday evening.

A Qatari court last week sentenced some of the fishermen to two years in prison, but an appeal against the verdict was filed.

More than 130 Bahrain-based fishermen were this year arrested by Qatar for entering its waters illegally.

In May, relations between Doha and Manama became tense after Qatari coastguards shot a Bahraini fisherman for straying into Qatari waters and refusing to heed warnings to leave the area. Adel Al Taweel, 37, was treated at a local hospital and was later taken to court. He was cleared of the charges, but was not allowed to leave Doha. He was not among the fishermen pardoned by the Emir on Tuesday.

Kuwait is currently the chair of the Gulf Cooperation Council, a loose alliance that includes Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE.

         

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About the author

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

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