Bahrain, death sentence appeal postponed, Woman sentenced to 4 years, more: AFP

Bahrain court adjourns Shiite death sentence appeal

(AFP) – 11 hours ago

DUBAI — A special security court in Bahrain postponed Wednesday the appeal hearing of four Shiites sentenced to death and three others jailed for life for killing two policemen.

“The Appeal National Safety Court postponed the case of murdering two policemen Kashif Ahmed Manzur and Mohammed Farouk Abdulsamad to 22nd of May to issue its final verdict,” said an English-language statement on state news agency BNA.

The national safety court of first instance had issued its verdict on April 28 drawing a condemnation from Amnesty International which urged Bahrain to block the executions.

The court was set up under the state of national safety, a lower level of emergency law, was declared by King Hamad in mid-March, a day before an all-out crackdown on a month-long Shiite-dominated protest demanding political reforms.

On Tuesday, BNA reported the same court had sentenced a woman, Fadila Mubarak Ahmed, to four years in prison for “assaulting a police officer and participating in anti-government demonstrations.”

Meanwhile, Mohammed Qassem Hussein of Iran was sentenced to two years in prison followed by expulsion from the country after he “took to the streets with the purpose of committing crimes and violating the country’s security,” it said.

Six other defendants were sentenced to terms raging between one and four years in prison.

Relations between the Sunni-ruled Arab states in the Gulf and non-Arab predominantly Shiite Iran were strained following a crackdown in March on protests in Bahrain that had been led by the tiny kingdom’s Shiite majority.

Iranian and Bahraini diplomats were also expelled from both sides.

According to authorities, four police were killed after being struck by cars during the protests in the Shiite-majority kingdom which is ruled by the Sunni Al-Khalifa dynasty.

On Tuesday, nine policemen were hurt when a car hit them while they were dispersing a protest in a Bahrain Shiite village, BNA state news agency said.

Four of the policemen sustained critical injuries in the attack that took place in Nuwaidrat, south of Manama, said BNA quoting a police official.

Bahraini authorities have said 24 people were killed during the month-long unrest, most of them demonstrators.

Last month, authorities said that 405 detainees have been referred to national safety courts, while 312 have been released.

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