Bahrain arrests 22 demonstrators for "terrorist attacks"

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A Bahraini girl stands in front of women taking part in an anti-government demonstration in the village of Diraz, west of Manama, late on 27 April 2013. (Photo: AFP - Mohammed al-Shaikh)

Published Sunday, April 28, 2013

Bahrain has rounded up 22 people suspected of attacking security forces and blocking roads during protests, including in the lead-up to its Formula One race this month, police said.

The arrests were related to alleged acts of violence since late February, said a police statement carried late Saturday by BNA state news agency.

In one of the arrests, police detained six people suspected of participating in a March 7 "terrorist attack" on police patrols in the village of Maqaba, west of the capital Manama, it said, adding security forces were still searching for other suspects.

Others were arrested over alleged attacks on police with petrol bombs and metal rods.

Police also arrested two people suspected of blocking roads and setting tires ablaze in the area of Dair, close the airport, on April 14, when demonstrations intensified against Bahrain hosting the Formula One Grand Prix race on April 21.

It was unclear when all of the arrests were made.

Al-Wefaq, the main opposition formation, said on Saturday that police arrested 14 people during raids on Thursday and Friday.

Protesters frequently clash with police in villages surrounding Manama. In some cases they hurl petrol bombs and burn tires. Police fired tear gas and buck shot to disperse them.

The kingdom was rocked by a month-long uprising in 2011, which was crushed with the help of Gulf troops led by neighboring Saudi Arabia.

Strategically located just across the Gulf from Iran, Bahrain is home base to the US Navy's Fifth Fleet and is also a major offshore financial and services center for its Arab neighbors in the oil-rich Gulf.

(AFP, Al-Akhbar)


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