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Policemen injured in Bahrain bomb explosion

Clashes broke out as police tried to prevent protesters from reaching capital

Gulf News

Dubai: Several policemen were injured when a home-made bomb exploded at a roundabout west of the Bahraini capital Manama on Wednesday, the prime minister was quoted as saying.

Shaikh Khalifa Bin Salman Al Khalifa said the explosion happened at Budaiya Highway “leaving a number of policemen injured whilst on duty”, the official Bahrain News Agency reported late on Wednesday.

A Ministry of Interior message on Twitter put the number of wounded at three and described the device as remotely-detonated and home-made. Both the ministry and Shaikh Khalifa described the explosion as a “terror” incident.

Bahraini police say they have been the target of numerous attacks with homemade bombs since April 2012, including one that killed a policeman in October.

The government has been struggling since early last year to end pro-democracy unrest led mainly by the Gulf Arab kingdom’s Shiite Muslims.

Five home-made bombs killed two people in Bahrain on November 5 and the government said the attacks bore the hallmarks of Hezbollah, the Lebanese militant group allied with Iran.

Iran dismisses Bahraini accusations of involvement in the political unrest. Hezbollah also denies involvement, but has criticised the government’s handling of protests.

Shaikh Khalifa said that Bahrain would remain stable and its citizens “would foil any terror plot targeting Bahrain to subvert its security,” BNA reported.

Meanwhile, clashes broke out on Wednesday near Manama as police forces prevented hundreds of anti-government protesters from marching to the Bahraini capital.

Several protesters were injured in the clashes, which erupted three days after an eight-year-old child died allegedly during an anti-government rally. The opposition says the child died from tear gas fired by police.

The protesters had wanted to reach Lulu Roundabout in Manama, the epicentre of 2011 anti-government protests.

— Reuters and DPA