Six sentenced to 15 years each in prison for planning attacks with Iran


A Bahraini court yesterday sentenced six people to 15 years in jail each for plotting with Shia Iran to stage attacks on targets including the Saudi embassy and the interior ministry.

Bahrain, a US ally and home to the US fifth fleet, has been in turmoil since pro-democracy protests led by majority Shias erupted last year after revolts in Egypt and Tunisia. The Sunni-led island, along with fellow Gulf Arab countries, has accused Iran of being behind the unrest. This is denied by Iran.

The official BNA news agency said three of those convicted were in contact with Iranian Revolutionary Guards and the Basij militia “to target sensitive and vital infrastructure facilities” in Bahrain, according to investigations by the public prosecution.

Opposition activists were not immediately available to comment.

Bahrain said in November it had arrested the men and broken up a cell planning to target its interior ministry, the Saudi embassy in Manama and a causeway linking the island state to Saudi Arabia. Four men were handed over by Qatar.

Iran denied it had any link to an alleged plot to stage attacks in Bahrain. Three of the men were sentenced in absentia, including Ali Mushaima, the son of jailed Shia dissident leader Hassan Mushaima, according to a lawyer for two other men who were found not guilty. – (Reuters)