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Bahrain dissidents court acquittal to be appealed

High Court of Appeals to hear the case involving Ali Salman on September 9

Gulf News

Manama: Bahrain’s Court of Appeals has set September 9 to review the appeal filed by the public prosecution against a court ruling that acquitted former leader of the now-dissolved Al Wefaq Ali Salman Ali Ahmad, Hassan Ali Juma Sultan and Ali Mahdi Ali Al Aswad in the intelligence case with Qatar.

The lower instance court last week dropped the charges of spying for a foreign country to carry out subversive acts against Bahrain and undermine its political and economic status and its national interests in order to topple the government against the three defendants.

Other charges presented by the prosecution included passing on defence secrets to a foreign country, accepting money from a foreign country in exchange for supplying military secrets and information related to the internal situation in the country, and broadcasting news and false and malicious rumours abroad to weaken financial trust in the kingdom and undermine its status.

However, Advocate General Osama Al Oufi said that he would challenge the verdict after the court failed to consider the evidence against them.

On Wednesday, he said that the prosecution filed the appeal and the court would consider after summer.

Al Oufi insisted there was irrefutable evidence against the defendants that could not be denied or ignored.

He cited telephone conversations between the defendants and Qatari officials, saying that the main defendant admitted during his questioning that it had taken place.

Al Oufi said that the prosecution did not allow anyone to interfere in its work and that it would not consider any statements that might affect its own duties, the national security of the Kingdom or its internal affairs.”

Some foreign statements had called upon the prosecution not to challenge the ruling acquitting the three defendants.

Only Ali Salman is in custody, serving a jail sentence in another case since 2014. The other two were tried in absentia.

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