Bahrain revokes citizenship of 31 Shia activists

By AFP
Published: November 7, 2012

Bahraini protesters wave their national flag. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

DUBAI: Bahraini authorities have revoked the citizenship of 31 Shia activists, among them two former members of parliament, for having “undermined state security,” state news agency BNA reported Wednesday.

The names of the 31 activists, including brothers Jawad and Jalal Fairuz, both ex-MPs who represented the major Shia al Wefaq bloc, were listed in the report, which quoted an interior ministry statement.

Also named was Ali Mashaima, son of prominent activist Hassan Mashaima who is head of the Shia opposition movement Haq and who is serving a life sentence for allegedly plotting against the monarchy.

The government move comes after Bahrain late last month banned all protests and gatherings to ensure “security is maintained,” after clashes between Shia-led demonstrators and security forces in the Sunni-ruled country.

The Gulf state has experienced unrest since March last year when the authorities crushed protests led by the Shia Muslim majority.

According to the International Federation for Human Rights, 80 people have died in Bahrain since the violence erupted on February 14 last year.

Hundreds of people were arrested when the security forces, aided by troops from neighbouring Saudi Arabia, crushed the uprising within a month, while many activists, including some whose names appear on Wednesday’s list, were tried in special military courts set up at the time.

Another former MP and leading al Wefaq member, Matar Matar, told AFP that “many named (on the list) were acquitted by a military court” after being charged with harming state security.

Others named on the list are currently living abroad, according to opposition sources.

Tension has been running high in the kingdom following a spate of bombings on Monday in the capital Manama which killed two Asian expatriates. Four people have been arrested in connection with the bombings.

King Hamad ordered Tuesday “the swift arrest of the terrorists who carried out the recent terrorist acts in Bahrain” and urged citizens to help “bring them to justice so they receive their punishment over this appalling act.”

Reader Comments (18)

  • Akshay, India
    Nov 7, 2012 - 4:18PM

    Good decision. Anyone who supports terrorism must be dealt with strictly.

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  • Rafidi
    Nov 7, 2012 - 4:43PM

    Seriously, since when do peaceful protests constitute terrorism or undermine state security ?

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  • Sonya
    Nov 7, 2012 - 5:09PM

    These corporation like, anti-human-rights countries can’t understand that the individuals being revoked of their nationalities are not immigrants to Bahrain, they are the sons and daughters of the soil having the right to kick the King out.Recommend

  • Sonya
    Nov 7, 2012 - 5:43PM

    These corporation like, anti-human-rights countries can’t understand that the individuals being revoked of their nationalities are not immigrants to Bahrain, they are the sons and daughters of the soil having the right to kick the King out.

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  • Syed
    Nov 7, 2012 - 5:48PM

    Where is the outrage? Bahrain has 75 to 80% shias and this is what the dictator is doing to crush the people. Will any world leader speak out? Saudi is helping the opposition in Syria and also helping this dictator. These wahabis will only do anything and everything to oppress the shia.

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  • Akshay, India
    Nov 7, 2012 - 6:03PM

    @Syed: Many such ‘activists’ are involved in acts of terror in Bahrain and the killing of foreigners there. Its good that the govt. has punished them.

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  • Rafidi
    Nov 7, 2012 - 6:16PM

    What acts of terror ?
    As for fogeiners, it us those very forgeiners who oppress them by joining Bahrain’s security forces as hired thugs.

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  • Syed
    Nov 7, 2012 - 6:16PM

    Akshay, you need to remove the ignorant glasses you have on. You have no idea what is going on there. this dictator regime is torturing and killing their civilians. read up on the human rights report. i really thought indians were somewhat knowledgeable but you disappoint me. they are revoking citizenship of born citizens yet they are giving citizenship to sunni immigrants from pakistan and other countries. these people are nothing short of monsters

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  • Rafidi
    Nov 7, 2012 - 6:17PM

    What acts of terror ?

    As for forgeiners, it is those very forgeiners who oppress them by joining Bahrain’s security forces as hired thugs.

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  • Jewcifer
    Nov 7, 2012 - 6:23PM

    Isn’t citizenship and visas considered biddat “innovation” in their Islam? Or the British system is more holy to them?

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  • Mohammad
    Nov 7, 2012 - 6:30PM

    where in ARAB world , is the democracy ? kings are king , doesn’t matter if they belong to majority or minority

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  • very confused
    Nov 7, 2012 - 6:39PM

    It’s good that Tribune highlights problems in Bahrain. It should also show whats going on in Syria. Majority people are facing a genocide under a barbaric dictator…32,000+ people have died there and another 28,000 missing
    http://edition.cnn.com/2012/10/18/world/meast/syria-civil-war/index.html

    Situation in Bahrain is a joke compared to that with mainly protesters who kill foreigners or plant home-made bombs being arrested.

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  • very confused
    Nov 7, 2012 - 7:00PM

    And please try to avoid highlighting sectarianism when reporting because it only leads to more hatred and violence. A dissident killed by a dictatorial regime is tyranny, regardless of what community/sect/religion/color he/she belongs to. The world should unite for freedom of speech and equal human rights in all countries

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  • m
    Nov 7, 2012 - 8:10PM

    Does throwing molotovs on a planned scheduale or burning tires considered peacefull both sides are wrong.many foreigners leaving due instability that caused feaar of job s
    ecurity

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  • m
    Nov 7, 2012 - 8:12PM
  • nomi
    Nov 7, 2012 - 8:41PM

    The irony!

    Pakistani mullahs would not condemn Bahrain because Saudi Arabia is backing them.

    The US will not condemn them for the same reason.

    And Pakistanis………

    Shias in Bahrain are even worse off than Palestinians.

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  • Rafidi
    Nov 8, 2012 - 12:55AM

    Amazing. Just amazing. People have issues with the Bahrain protests as it puts their cushy expat jobs possibly in jeopardy. To me, that seems the height of insensitivity and lack of empathy. Do you realize that there are thousands of Bahrain Shias with the right qualifications and the only reason they are unemployed is because they are Shias and are discriminated against on that basis and not just that, their protests against this tyranny are suppressed, not just by the Bahraini monarchy but by every other monarchy that sanctioned the GCC troops that went in to crush the protests in Bahrain.

    Perhaps you will take notice if the Bahrain Shias form a Free Bahraini Army like the Free Syrian Army. Will that legitimize their struggle. So please, spare me the equating of 17 year olds with Molotov cocktails on one hand and soldiers in APCs responding with machine guns on the other side. The two are as different as day and night.

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  • sid
    Nov 8, 2012 - 4:10AM

    Myanmar…………..Why not Bahrain??????????

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