Qatar releases Bahraini fisherman four months after his detention

September 6, 2010

Qatar has allowed a Bahraini fisherman to go home four months after it arrested him.

Adel Al Taweel, 37, has been released by the Qataris, the head of Bahrain coastguard said on Monday afternoon.

Al Taweel was detained on May 8 for allegedly entering its waters illegally and resisting arrest. Qatari coast guards said that they shot him in the back after ignoring warning shots to leave the Qatari waters alongside two other ships.

Al Taweel was treated at a Qatari hospital, but when Bahrain wanted to repatriate him, Doha refused and insisted on his trial.

A mini crisis between Bahrain and Qatar erupted and Manama asked Doha to allow 107 Bahraini and Asian fishermen detained in Doha to go home. Bahrain also made moves to introduce new Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) texts to extend the privileges accorded to Gulf citizens to trade in the six GCC members to fishermen.

However, Qatar tried the fishermen and released all the Bahrainis after they paid fines for allegedly straying into Qatari waters. However, and despite being cleared by a local court, Al Taweel was not allowed to leave and had to stay in an apartment in Doha paid for by the Bahraini government.

His family repeatedly pleaded with the Qataris to release him before the start of Ramadan and, at a later stage, in time for Eid Al Fitr.

Bahrain and Qatar were embroiled in a border dispute that was resolved by the International Court of Justice in March 2001. Both countries accepted the verdict and pledged to reinforce cooperation at all levels.



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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