Iran reiterates oppsoition to violence in Bahrain amid reports about close GCC coordination on security issues

September 8, 2010

Iran has reiterated its opposition to the violence that has afflicted Bahrain.

“We do not tolerate any acts of terror in any sisterly or friendly country,” Hossein Amir Abdollahian, Iran’s ambassador to Bahrain, said. “We reject the acts of violence, sabotage and arson in Bahrain, and we support the reforms launched in the country,” he told Bahrain’s interior minister.

Abdollahian said that he was confident about the ability of the Bahraini leadership to deal with security-related issues, Bahrain News Agency (BNA) reported.

Iran last month distanced itself from the wave of clashes sparked on August 13 in Bahrain, saying that countries with an agenda targeting the region were behind the incitement to acts of violence, arson and destruction of property.

“The instigators of the current violence in Bahrain are people working for countries with negative plans for the region,” Abdollahian said. “Iran does not approve any form of violence and dialogue remains the best option to express oneself, particularly under the democracy and reforms launched in Bahrain under King Hamad Bin Eisa Al Khalifa,” he said, but without naming any of the countries commanding violence.

In Kuwait, a local daily said that several Gulf states were coordinating to establish a security team to exchange information and data about sleeping terror cells.

“The security agencies in the Gulf Cooperation Council are in a state of alert to gather more information on terrorist groups that seek to undermine security in the Gulf, taking advantage of the instability of the region,” Al Jareeda daily reported, quoting unnamed security sources. “Security officials have been investigating whether the network busted by Manama comprised elements in other countries,” the paper said.

Manama on Saturday said that it had dismantled a network seeking to overthrow the regime and destablise the country through acts of arson and sabotage and named 23 of its members.

On Tuesday, the public prosecution said that it was pressing 12 charges against the network top and middle leaders. Only two, who live in London, have not been arrested.

Rights watchdogs have called for a fair trial and Bahrain’s prosecutor said that the laws and human rights principles would be duly respected.

On Wednesday, Bahrain Human Rights Society said that the social development ministry had “frozen the prerogatives of the board and appointed a new director.”

Last week, the ministry said that it would take legal and administrative action against societies that did not have a national outreach and represented the interests of only one category or section.

BHRS waded into controversy when some journalists clashed at a press conference organized by the society with relatives of detainees.

The journalists blamed the society for not condemning a physical assault on the managing editor of a local paper and for taking up only certain cases, but the relatives reportedly insisted that the conference was devoted to discussing the case of the detainees and criticized journalists for their attitude.

Several media launched attacks on the society and Bahrain Journalists Association, the umbrella for Bahrain-based journalists, blasted it for allowing its guests to verbally abuse journalists. The BHRS rejected the criticism, saying that the journalists’ version of the conference was inaccurate.



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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