Bahrain says “several” people arrested

March 18, 2011
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Bahrain Defence Force on Thursday afternoon said that several people had been arrested, but did not give their number or their names.

In a communiqué read on Bahrain TV, the BDF, tasked with implementing the provisions of Decree 18/2011 on the declaration of the state of national safety, said that “several leaders of the sedition ring who had called for the downfall of the regime and had intelligence contacts with foreign countries were arrested” on March 17.

The statement charged the arrested with “inciting during the recent incidents for the killing of citizens and the destruction of public and private property.”

The BDF said their action resulted in “undermining social peace, the loss of innocent lives and terrorizing citizens and residents.”

The army said that it would “take all necessary legal measures against the leaders in accordance with the decree declaring the state of national safety and the laws in the force in the Kingdom of Bahrain.”

Among those arrested, according to reports in Manama, was Husain Mshaima, the leader of Haq, a group that splintered from Al Wefaq Society in 2005, amid deep divergences over joining mainstream politics. Haq has vehemently opposed the 2002 constitution and refused to take part in the parliamentary elections held for the first time in 2002 after a three-decade constitutional hiatus.

Mshaima, cited as a major suspect in the alleged network to undermine Bahrain’s stability announced in August, returned to Bahrain last month under an amnesty and joined the protests, calling for the establishment of a republic.

Ebrahim Shareef, the secretary-general of the National Democratic Action Society “Waad”, a liberal political formation, has also been detained. His arrest was confirmed by Waad on its website.

Shareef ran twice in the parliamentary elections, in 2006 and 2010, but lost in the second round on both occasions.

Bahrain declared the three-month state of national safety, emergency laws that are short of martial laws, on Tuesday one day after units from the Peninsula Shield, the military arm of the six member Gulf Cooperation Council, arrived in the country.

         

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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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