Bahraini authorities detainee outspoken critic
Bahraini authorities rearrested an outspoken critic of the government on Friday, amid a stern warning from the country's top leadership to "instigators" that their actions would no longer be tolerated, dpa reported.
Haq Movement for Civil Liberties and Democracy spokesman Abdul Jalil al-Singace was detained by the authorities at Bahrain International Airport early Friday morning upon his return from London.
Al-Singace, who also chairs the human rights office of Haq had addressed a seminar in the British House of Lords on August 5, where he spoke about human rights conditions in the small Gulf island.
The arrest sparked clashes near his Karbabad home on the outskirts of the capital Manama after relatives and supporters gathered to protest in the afternoon.
Later Friday night, another clash broke-out in front of the Public Prosecution offices when anti-riot police moved in to disperse a small group of relatives and activists that gathered there following rumors that al-Singace would be presented to face charges. Clashes had also been reported in several Shiite villages, where the movement has supporters.
The arrest came as Bahrain's King, Sheikh Hamad bin Isa al- Khalifa, called on top security officials to apply the law without any complacency against anyone who stands in the way of the country's development.
According to the Bahrain News Agency (BNA), the king told the officers during their meeting with him on Friday that that all forms of incitement carried out by instigators that harm and mislead citizens must be halted, with the instigators barring full responsibility for their actions.
Shortly after the meeting Bahrain's Prime Minister Sheikh Khalifa bin Salman al-Khalifa affirmed that all government bodies, including the Ministry of Interior, would direct resources to prevent them from achieving their goals.
"We will deal with them within the boundaries of law, which is supreme in the country," the statement said.
"Those who do not hear the voice of reason or deliberately choose to ignore it will hear the voice of law."
The arrest of al-Singace comes just a few weeks after a close ally of the movement, Sheikh Mohammad Habib al-Mugdad, was temporarily detained by police last month for leading an unauthorized march, which ended in clashes.
Both al-Singace and al-Mugdad had been arrested along with Haq secretary general, Hasan Mushima, and more then 30 other supporters in January of last year for allegedly spear-heading a push to destabilize the government and instigate unrest. However, three months later the three along with more then 170 security-related detainees, who had been held since late 2007, were released in a general pardon and the charges against them dropped.
Haq was formed in 2005 as a spin-off from the main Islamist Shiite opposition group Al Wefaq after they decided along with other key opposition groups to end their boycott and take part in the 2006 elections. Haq does not recognize the 2002 Bahrain constitution.
The rising tension between the opposition and the government comes as the country plans to go the polls for the third time this decade in October.