Bahrain's Prime Minister issues threat against opposition

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Bahrain's Prime Minister of 43 years speaking in Muharraq today (Source: BNA)

Speaking today in Muharraq, Bahrain's Prime Minister issued a strong threat against the opposition in advance of the August 14th protests. Sheikh Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa is the uncle of the current King and has been in his current position since 1970, making him the longest serving Prime Minister in the world. He said:
This island will burn to a cinder all those who seek to tamper with its security and stability.

All we want is that all citizens across Bahrain’s cities and villages participate effectively in efforts to implement the recommendations approved by the National Assembly.

The focus is on Bahrain now because it is the gateway for other countries in the region, and we have to foil such desperate attempts.

We will not accept to let our country be subjected to chaos and destruction, like other countries.

During the meeting in Muharraq, the PM reiterated the government’s stance in implementing the very much-publicized National Assembly ‘anti-terror’ recommendations made on the 28th of July. The Bahrain opposition has accused the government of implementing tough security measures aimed at peaceful protesters and activist by dressing them up as terrorism laws. Some of these measures include the banning of protests and the revocation of citizenship. The definition of terrorism has been left vague in the law.
The Prime Minister has also threatened that “all measures” will be taken against terrorism and “those who incite it” calling them “evil terrorists and instigators who disseminate fallacies and lies”.
Last month, the Prime Minister made some equally controversial comments. On July 1st, he visited police officer Mubarak bin Huwail - the day that the officer was acquitted on charges related to the torture of six medics in 2011. The Prime Minister thanked Huwail and told the assembled people that the law did not apply to them.

A video of the meeting was subsequently released. Marc Owen Jones wrote of the incident:
The meeting, which was attended by a number of people (including several from Saudi Arabia), offers an important insight into the lack of accountability faced by Bahrain’s security forces. In it, the Prime Minister thanks Mubarak bin Huwail for his ‘good work’, and also tells those gathered that they are above the law. The exact quotes, along with their translation, are as follows:

(0.24) Prime Minister to member(s) of the group - هالقوانين محد يطبقها عليكم ، إلا علاقتنا وياكم ، وإلي يطبق عليكم يطبق علينا إحنا. إحنا جسد واحد
Translation: These laws cannot be applied to you. No one can touch this bond. Whoever applies these laws against you is applying them against us. We are one body.

(2.28) – PM to Mubarak bin Huwail  - نا ياي أشكركم يا مبارك على صبرك وعلى عملك الطيب والإنسان مثل ماتقول ينطرح عمله وعملكم كلكم يا هالعايلة هو سبب سمعتكم إلى مافي أحسن منها ومايبقى عند الإنسان في حياته وعقب ما الله يختاره إلا سمعته وسمعتكم كبيرة وعايلتكم كبيرة وإحنا أهلكم
Translation: I am here to thank you, Mubarak, for your patience and good work.  A human as they say is judged by his work, and your work as a family is the reason for your reputation which is exemplary. A human is left with nothing but his reputation in life and death, and yours is a great one as a family.  We are one family.
The Bahrain Center for Human Rights said at the time:
The Prime Minister’s visit to bin Huwail only reaffirm that impunity comes from the highest levels of the ruling family. It also reaffirms the fact that the judiciary system in Bahrain is neither independent nor fair; and far from being in line with international standards. Kangaroo courts and unfair trials continue against political dissidents in continuation of allegations of torture both inside and outside official government buildings; whereas those accused of extrajudicial killings or torture are either acquitted or given very light sentences in regards to the charges.

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