Bahrain FM Slams Nasrallah as 'Criminal'إقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Bahrain's foreign minister on Tuesday lashed out at Hizbullah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, calling him a "criminal" with no right to criticize the kingdom over its treatment of its Shiite opposition.
"The people of Bahrain are above being addressed by a criminal whose hands are stained by the blood of innocents in Syria, Lebanon and Iraq," Bahraini Foreign Minister Khalid al-Khalifa wrote on Twitter.
"Any contact with terrorist Hizbullah is a contact with the enemy," said Khalifa, whose Sunni-ruled kingdom, along with other Gulf monarchies, views Hizbullah as a terror group.
Nasrallah on Monday dismissed the government of Bahrain as "dwarves whose oppression will get them only disappointment," warning that the Bahrain government "should not assume it can continue to oppress its people and pressure the outside world to remain silent."
Nasrallah insisted that his party does not meddle in Bahraini affairs to back the country's Shiite majority, saying that Bahrain's Shiite opposition "does not belong to any (foreign) state or side."
"What is happening in Bahrain is very dangerous," said Nasrallah, pointing to the justice ministry's decision to seek a judicial order to shut down a Shiite clerics' group, and to the latest arrest of a top figure in the main opposition association Al-Wefaq.
The sharp riposte to remarks made by Nasrallah comes amid a ratcheting up of sectarian tensions across the region as Sunni and Shiite Muslims back opposing sides in Syria's civil war.
Gulf monarchies, which are supporting the Sunni-led rebellion against the Syrian government, have been infuriated by Hizbullah's open intervention to keep Syria's President Bashar Assad in power.
They have collectively agreed to impose sanctions on Hizbullah supporters.