Bahrain Frees 23 Shiites Accused of Terror

إقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية W460

Bahraini authorities have released 23 Shiite activists who were being held on charges of terrorism after a pardon by King Hamad, an opposition MP told Agence France Presse on Wednesday.

"The 23 have been released," said MP Jassem Hussein, a member of the Islamic National Accord Association, which controls the largest bloc in the 40-strong parliament.

The 23, along with two more who were being tried in absentia, faced charges of forming an illegal organization, engaging in and financing terrorism and spreading false and misleading information.

Their release follows a pardon announced by King Hamad bin Issa al-Khalifa in response to demands by the Shiite-led opposition, which is pushing for the replacement of the Khalifa dynasty with a constitutional monarchy.

Bahraini authorities have called for national dialogue to find a way out of the deadlock.

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