Bahrain opposition figure to stand trial for Qatar spying

Bahrain opposition figure to stand trial for Qatar spying
Sheikh Ali Salman

Manama - On November 1 the state prosecution charged him with "spying on behalf of a foreign country



By AFP, Wam

Published: Sun 12 Nov 2017, 10:30 PM

Last updated: Mon 13 Nov 2017, 12:34 AM

Bahraini opposition leader Sheikh Ali Salman will face trial later this month for "spying" for Qatar, the state prosecution said on Sunday.
Salman will be tried alongside two of his colleagues, Hassan Sultan and Ali Mehdi, from November 27 after they were charged earlier this month with espionage.
"The prosecution has referred the case in which Ali Salman, Hassan Sultan and Ali Mehdi are accused of spying for the state of Qatar to the High Criminal Court," the state prosecution said in a tweet.
Salman has been behind bars since 2014 serving a nine-year sentence for allegedly inciting hatred.
On November 1 the state prosecution charged him with "spying on behalf of a foreign country ... with the aim of carrying out subversive acts against Bahrain and harming its national interests".
Salman was also charged with "revealing defence secrets to a foreign country and disseminating information that would harm Bahrain's status and reputation".
The investigation into purported links between Salman and Qatar was first launched in August, after a quartet of Arab countries - Bahrain included - accused Qatar of supporting terrorism and close relations with Iran.
State-run Bahrain Television aired a report which claimed that Qatar was behind the unrest that have shaken the country for the past six years.
It alleged that Qatar's former premier Sheikh Hamad bin Jassem Al Thani contacted Salman - then head of Bahrain's opposition group, Al Wefaq - in 2011 and asked him to urge protesters to flood the streets and ramp up pressure on the state.
Meanwhile, the terrorist blast which targeted an oil pipeline in the Buri area of Bahrain has been widely condemned by Arab countries as well as the Gulf Cooperation Council.
In their separate messages, they reaffirmed their full support to the government and people of Bahrain and backed measures being taken to counter terrorism.
In a statement, Egypt's foreign ministry said the country's government and people stand with Bahrain in confronting all acts of terrorism and sabotage aimed at its security and stability.
Oman's foreign ministry also affirmed its solidarity with Bahrain in all the measures it takes against all forms of sabotage and terrorism that target innocents."
A foreign ministry statement said: "This necessitates confrontation of terrorism by all possible means to protect the kingdom's security, development and stability."
In a statement, GCC Secretary-General Dr Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayani described the blast as a "serious terror crime", which endangers the kingdom's supreme interests and terrifies both citizens and residents.
He expressed his strong denouncement of targeting oil pipelines by terrorists, considering this as "a dangerous development in criminal methods adopted by the terrorist organisations which are supported and directed by Iran".
Such crimes will not undermine the resolve of the leadership of Bahrain and its insistence on maintaining security and stability, he said. He also hailed the efforts by Bahrain's security apparatuses to control fire efficiently and at record time, and their measures taken to protect residents in the area of fire.

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