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Bahrain demands apology from Iran

Charges Iranian media tampered with translation of Mursi speech to include its name

  • By Habib Toumi, Bureau Chief
  • Published: 20:42 September 1, 2012
  • Gulf News

Manama: Bahrain on Saturday demanded an apology from Iran after it charged that the Iranian media tampered with the translation of the speech delivered by the Egyptian president in Tehran to include its name.

“Hamad Al Amer, the foreign affairs undersecretary for regional and Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) affairs, has summoned the Iranian charge d’affaires and handed him a formal protest note following the tampering by the Iranian media and replacing Syria with Bahrain in the speech delivered by president Mohammad Mursi at the opening of the Non-Aligned Movement Summit in Tehran,” the foreign ministry said in a statement. “Such an abuse and distortion of the facts is rejected and is regarded as interference in Bahrain’s domestic affairs and a violation of the norms.”

The foreign ministry demanded an apology from the Iranian government and the taking of the necessary measures to ensure that such negative attitudes harmed relations fraternal relations between Bahrain and Tehran, the foreign ministry said.

The interpreter replaced Syria with Bahrain when President Mursi talked about the so-called Arab Spring and enumerated the countries where people launched revolutions to change their regimes.

Mursi mentioned Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, Yemen and Syria, but the Iranian interpreter dropped Syria and replaced it with Bahrain.

The Egyptian foreign ministry issued a statement insisting that Mursi never mentioned Bahrain in his address as he handed over the presidency of the Non-Aligned Movement.

“Iran has to apologise to Bahrain if what happened was a mistake. However, if it is not, then its credibility is still as we know it,” Shaikh Khalid Bin Ahmad Al Khalifa, the foreign minister, wrote on his Twitter account.

Bahrain last month reinstated its ambassador in Tehran after an 18-month absence after it pulled him out in March 2011 to protest against “Iran’s interference in Bahrain’s domestic affairs.”

Tehran withdrew its ambassador the following day, but has not told him to resume his work in Manama yet. Both embassies have remained open despite the recall of the ambassadors.

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