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Bahrain car blast suspects arrested

Manhunt launched to arrest other suspects in blast

Image Credit: BNA
Tareq Al Hassan
Gulf News

Manama: Bahrain has identified the three suspects arrested in connection with the car blast at the parking lot of a mosque in West Rifaa, a posh area south of the capital Manama.

Public Security Chief Major General Tariq Al Hassan said the three suspects were 25, 32 and 34 years old and that there was ample evidence of their involvement in the car explosion last week.

The suspects, all Bahrainis, have been remanded in custody pending investigations. They had been questioned by the public prosecution, he said at a press conference to shed light on the bombing at the Shaikh Eisa Bin Salman Mosque, the place of worship named after the former ruler of the country.

A nationwide manhunt has been launched to arrest the other suspects, he said.

Al Hassan said that potentially fatal debris, fragments and splinters from the car blast on Wednesday were scattered over a radius of about 50 metres as worshippers were performing the Isha and Tarwaeeh prayers, the evening supplications conducted in Ramadan, the month of fasting.

According to the senior officer, the bomb placed inside a stolen car was a combination of gas cylinders and homemade explosives and was detonated through a mobile phone that served as a remote control. Inflammable material was also used to increase the power of the explosion.

The bombing was reported to the interior ministry at 8:30pm, he said.

The three suspects had reportedly stolen two cars, a jeep and a pick-up, to carry out the bombing, he said. One car was used for the blast and the second as a getaway.

The police were able to track them down through highway surveillance cameras, fingerprints and DNA traces from the blast scene.

The investigations are continuing to determine the suspects’ affiliations and if there were foreign links.

The blast has been condemned by the country’s leaders, major political societies, the parliament, several embassies in Manama and international organisations.

The government said that it would bring those behind the blast to justice as it pledged a strict enforcement of the law and a zero-tolerance policy towards acts of terror.