x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Bahrain court upholds prison sentences for 9 medics

Bahrain's highest court has upheld prison sentences for nine medical personnel convicted for their role in anti-government protests last year.

MANAMA, Bahrain // Bahrain's highest court has upheld prison sentences for nine medical personnel convicted for their role in anti-government protests last year.

The government's Information Affairs Authority says today's decision by the Court of Cassation closes the cases, which have brought widespread criticism from rights groups and medical societies.

The medics' sentences span from five years to one month on charges that include taking part in illegal gatherings after the uprising began in February, 2011. Two other medics are fugitives and were sentenced to 15 years in absentia.

Authorities accused some staff at the state-run Salmaniya Medical Complex of siding with protesters from Bahrain's Shiite majority, which is seeking a greater political voice in the Sunni-ruled nation.

Some opposition leaders have been sentenced to life.