Tehran rejects Bahrain’s anti-Iran accusation

Iran has criticized Bahrain for linking the Islamic Republic to a number of people accused of plotting to launch attacks in the Persian Gulf monarchy.

Instead of accusing Iran, the Bahraini government had better meet its people’s demands through negotiations, Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Marzieh Afkham said on Wednesday.

Afkham emphasized that the crisis in the Persian Gulf kingdom needs a Bahraini solution, stressing the need for Manama to take confidence-building measures in a bid to pave the way for a serious national dialogue.

The official was responding to a decision by a Manama court on Sunday to sentence four people to life in jail and hand 15-year terms to six others.

Bahraini authorities claimed the men were linked to Iran and were planning to launch attacks in the kingdom.

The defendants were part of a group of 24 on trial, 14 of whom were acquitted. Two of those sentenced to life were tried in absentia.

The trials come as Bahraini courts continue to slap pro-democracy activists with long jail terms over their participation in anti-regime protests.

The Persian Gulf island state, which is a US ally and home to its Fifth Fleet, has been in turmoil since pro-democracy protests erupted in mid-February 2011.

Thousands of protesters have since held numerous demonstrations in the streets of Bahrain, calling for the ruling Al Khalifa family to step down.

According to local sources, scores of people have been killed and hundreds arrested in a brutal regime crackdown, backed by Saudi Arabia.

By Press TV


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