Bahraini charge d'affaires summoned to Iranian Foreign Ministry
The Bahraini charge d'affaires was summoned to Iran's Foreign Ministry on Wednesday in protest at expulsion of the Second Secretary of Iran's Embassy in Manama by the Bahraini government, IRNA reported.
Director General of the Persian Gulf Department at Foreign Ministry Hossein Amir-Abdollahian in the meeting informed the Bahraini diplomat of Iran's strong protest at the baseless allegations raised against the Iranian diplomat.
Criticizing the Bahraini government's "wrong approach" towards public demands, Abdollahian said the Islamic Republic of Iran reserves the right to reciprocate the Bahraini government's action.
He said the presence of foreign military forces in Bahrain to suppress Bahraini people will not help solve Bahrain problem but on the contrary will spread the country's domestic issue to the region and further complicate existing conditions.
Relations between Shi'ite Iran and Gulf Arab states have nosedived since Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates sent troops into the island state of Bahraini, a Sunni Muslim monarchy ruling a Shi'ite majority, in March to help crush pro-democracy protests.
A statement on the Bahrain News Agency late on Monday said Bahrain's Foreign Ministry had summoned Iranian charge d'affaires Mehdi Islami to inform him diplomat Hojjatullah Rahmani had 72 hours to leave "based on his link to the spy cell in Kuwait."
"Bahrain calls on Iran to desist from these serious violations of standards of international relations which are a threat to the security and stability of the region," it said.
This month Kuwait expelled three Iranian diplomats for involvement in an alleged spy ring, prompting Tehran to order three Kuwaiti diplomats to leave Iran.
That was after a Kuwaiti court sentenced two Iranians and a Kuwaiti to death in March for involvement in espionage.
Bahrain, a U.S. ally that hosts the U.S. Fifth Fleet, has also begun the trial of two Iranians and a Bahraini on charges of spying for Iran's Revolutionary Guards.
Iran, which once claimed sovereignty over Bahrain, complained to the United Nations over the recent crackdown that has continued with the arrests of hundreds of activists and deaths of some in police custody.