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Bahrain sentences protesters to long jail terms

bahrain jailBahraini authorities continue to mount pressure on dissent as a court in Manama hands heavy prison sentences to nine people including teenagers.

The Bahraini protesters were sentenced Wednesday on charges of attacking police during anti-regime rallies, with sentences ranging from five to ten years each.

The court said the protesters were among around 30 masked men who allegedly pelted a police patrol vehicle with Molotov cocktails in the village of Nuwaidrat in March last year.

The incident marks the latest in a series of harsh sentences handed down to protesters in the Persian Gulf nation.

On March 30, a Bahraini court sentenced 13 pro-democracy protesters including several teenagers to life in prison for allegedly attempting to kill a policeman and participating in an anti-regime protest outside the capital city of Manama in March 2012.

The defense announced that it planned to appeal the sentences.

A large number of Bahrainis have been put behind bars since a revolution began in the Persian Gulf country three years ago.

Since mid-February 2011, thousands of pro-democracy protesters have held numerous demonstrations in the streets of Bahrain, calling for the Al Khalifa royal family to relinquish power.

On March 14, 2011, troops from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates invaded the country to assist the Bahraini government in its crackdown on peaceful protesters.

Scores of Bahrainis have been killed and hundreds injured and jailed by the regime forces since the uprising broke out.


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