Bahrain jails 12 Shias over attack on police

AFP , Sunday 8 Dec 2013

A Bahraini court on Sunday sentenced 12 Shias, including three minors, to prison terms of up to five years for attacking a police patrol with Molotov cocktails, a judicial source said.

The nine adults were sentenced to five years in jail each while the three minors were handed down three-year sentences for the April 2012 attack in a Shia  suburb of Manama.

The jail terms are the latest to be handed down to Shias accused of violence in the Sunni-ruled Gulf monarchy.

A Shia-led uprising to demand democratic reform was crushed in March 2011 but protests have continued in Shia villages and districts around Manama.

On Monday, 16 Shias were sentenced to seven years in prison each after being convicted of attacking a police patrol with Molotov cocktails in May last year and for taking part in an unauthorised protest.

At least 89 people have been killed since the protests began, according to the International Federation for Human Rights.

Strategically located across the Gulf from Shiite Iran, Bahrain is home to the US Navy's Fifth Fleet and is an offshore financial and services centre for its oil-rich Arab neighbours.

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