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Bahrain arrests man for tweets critical of upcoming election

November 13, 2018

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Bahrain’s state-run news agency says prosecutors have detained and charged a man for tweets critical of the country’s upcoming parliamentary elections.

A government agency tasked with monitoring the internet informed prosecutors that the man, who was not publicly identified, had posted tweets dissuading voters from participation in the Nov. 24 elections. The Bahrain News Agency reported Tuesday the tweets sought to “hamper the democratic process.”

The Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy identified the man as former lawmaker Ali Rashed al-Asheeri, who’d expressed on Twitter his intention to boycott the elections.

The elections will take place without Bahrain’s largest opposition bloc, which was dissolved in 2016. Its leader, Sheikh Ali Salman, was sentenced to life in prison as part of a crackdown on majority Shiite protesters in the Sunni-ruled country.

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