24 Jun '11, 12pm

AP: #Bahrain cleric condemns life sentences for leaders

MANAMA, Bahrain (AP) - Bahrain's top Shiite cleric on Friday sharply criticized the life sentences given to eight opposition leaders by a special security court for their role in anti-government protests. Sheik Isa Qassim's sermon is the latest signal that Shiite leaders could snub appeals by Bahrain's Sunni rulers for dialogue next month amid the crackdown on opposition supporters in the Gulf kingdom, which is home to the U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet. The cleric called the mass trials of Shiite opposition figures unfair and appealed to the nation's Sunni rulers to overturn the sentences if they want dialogue. Bahrain on Wednesday convicted 21 opposition figures of plotting to overthrow the royal family. Eight leaders received life sentences and 13 others got long prison terms. "This is not an environment for a political solution, when people are suffering," the cleric said durin...

Full article: http://www.todayonline.com/World/EDC110624-0000624/Bahrai...

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