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U.S. Concerned about Bahrain Opposition Sentences

Wednesday, 22 Jun 2011 02:35 PM

 

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States Wednesday expressed concern about the severity of the sentences given to opposition leaders in Bahrain related to protests in the Gulf state.

Bahrain sentenced eight prominent Shi'ite Muslim activists and opposition leaders to life in prison on charges of plotting a coup during protests earlier this year.

"We are concerned about the severity of the sentences handed down," State Department spokesman Mark Toner said. "We're also concerned about the use of military courts to try these civilians."

Demonstrators have mounted scattered daily protests in the Gulf island kingdom since emergency law was lifted on June 1.

As the cases go through an appeals process, "we continue to urge the Bahraini government to abide by its commitment to transparent judicial proceedings conducted in full accordance with Bahrain's international legal obligations," Toner said.

(Reporting by Tabassum Zakaria; Editing by Eric Walsh)

© 2014 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

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