Bahraini court overturns death, prison sentences to protesters

Bahraini court overturns death, prison sentences to protesters

PanARMENIAN.Net - A Bahraini appeals court on Wednesday, Dec 26, overturned death and prison sentences issued earlier to protesters for their role in a pro-democracy uprising, a defense lawyer said, according to Reuters.

Bahrain has been convulsed by unrest since February 2011 following demonstrations led by majority Shi'ites demanding democratic change in the Sunni-led monarchy.

The ruling Al Khalifa family brought in Gulf Arab troops, mainly from Saudi Arabia, and imposed two months of martial law to end the uprising. Thousands were arrested and military trials were instituted during the martial law period.

The High Criminal Court of Appeals commuted the death sentence issued last year for two men convicted of killing two policemen to life in prison, lawyer Mohammed al-Jishi said.

The court commuted the life sentences for two others involved in the same case to 15 years in jail, he said.

The court also cut to 15 years in prison the life sentences issued in October 2011 for 13 men for killing a Pakistan citizen during the protests, Jishi said. One man was set free.

The appeals court also reduced sentences of 15 years in prison that were handed last year to 15 people for the attempted murder of a soldier, vandalizing the buildings at the University of Bahrain and "inciting hatred of the ruling system", Jishi said.

The new sentences vary between three, five and seven years in jail.

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