A court in Bahrain has sentenced five anti-regime activists to five years in prison on terrorism charges, amid the ongoing Al Khalifa regime’s crackdown on dissent.
The verdicts were issued on Tuesday after the court convicted the defendants of plotting to disrupt the Bahrain Formula One Grand Prix last year by planting a bomb at the circuit, state news agency BNA reported.
According to the Bahrain Youth Society for Human Rights (BYSHR), two women were among the activists, identified as Nafisa al-Asfoor, 31, and Rayhana al-Musawi, 38.
The two were arrested during a protest near the circuit and had complained of being tortured, the BYSHR said, adding, “Both women have told their families that they were tortured and abused by police during their questioning.”
On April 27, eight pro-democracy activists were sentenced to life in prison for the alleged killing of a policeman and participating in anti-regime protests in the northern village of Dair in August 2013.
Since mid-February 2011, thousands of pro-democracy protesters have held numerous demonstrations in the streets of Bahrain, calling for the Al Khalifa family to relinquish power.
On March 14, 2011, troops from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates invaded the country to assist the Bahraini regime in its crackdown on peaceful protesters.
According to local sources, scores of people have been killed and hundreds arrested.
Physicians for Human Rights says doctors and nurses have been detained, tortured, or disappeared because they have “evidence of atrocities committed by the authorities, security forces, and riot police” in the crackdown on anti-government protesters.