Thursday, June 14, 2012

Bahrain eases medic sentences, U.S. "deeply disappointed"

(Reuters) - The United States said on Thursday it was "deeply disappointed" by a Bahrain court verdict which failed to strike down sentences against medics over their role in last year's pro-democracy uprising.

The court in the Gulf Arab state, an important U.S. ally that hosts Washington's Fifth Fleet, reduced sentences against nine medical professionals and acquitted nine others, but rights groups also criticized the decision to keep some of them in jail, saying it was politically motivated to placate hardliners within the ruling family.

"While sentences were reduced, we are deeply disappointed by these convictions, and that the Bahraini government did not use alternative means to address these cases," visiting U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor Michael Posner told a press conference. Read More