DUBAI, Jan 19, (Agencies): Bahraini authorities on Thursday lifted a ban on the electronic edition of Al-Wasat newspaper, which was accused of sowing sedition during protests triggered by the execution of three Shiites.
The information ministry said in a statement that it has decided to allow the daily to use electronic media, after it had banned the daily on Monday from posting online. The ban that was open-ended did not affect the paper edition, and was “due to the newspaper’s repeated publishing of and spreading (material) that sows sedition in society and harms national unity”, the ministry said at the time. It was imposed a day after protests broke out against the execution of three members of Bahrain’s Shiite majority convicted of a deadly bomb attack on police in 2014.
Al-Wasat was suspended for two days in August 2015 after being accused of “violating the law and repeated dissemination of information that affects national unity and the kingdom’s relationship with other countries”. Sunni-ruled Bahrain has been rocked by sporadic unrest since March 2011 when security forces brutally crushed an Arab Spring-inspired uprising. At the height of the 2011 uprising, Al- Wasat was suspended and its chief editor Mansoor al-Jamri tried and fined for allegedly publishing false information. It was later allowed to reopen.
People in Bahrain continue protests against the ruling Al Khalifah regime over the execution of three Shia Muslim activists convicted of killing three policemen during a pro-democracy rally back in March 2014. Scores of demonstrators blocked roads with burning tires in the village of Nuwaidrat, located about ten kilometers south of the capital, Manama, on Monday and threw firebombs at an anti-riot police vehicle. A plume of smoke could be seen in the sky as fire burnt on street. Police cars could be heard from hundreds of meters away, with their sirens going.