Bahrain protesters jailed for 15 years

Seven handed long sentences after admitting possession of petrol bombs during protest.

The defendants admitted the charges, according to a judicial source. [AP]

A Bahrain court has sentenced seven people to 15 years in jail for involvement in a protest in which a policeman was wounded, a judicial source has told the AFP news agency.

The defendants admitted taking part in an authorised protest and being in possession of petrol bombs, the source said.

During the December 2012 demonstration in the Shia village of Dia near the capital, Manama, policemen were attacked and one was wounded.

Dozens of Shias have been tried over unrest following Arab Spring-inspired protests in mid-February 2011, during which demonstrators called for reforms in the Sunni-ruled kingdom.

The protests led to a nationwide crackdown a month later, backed by Saudi-led Gulf forces.

Last year, authorities increased the penalties for those convicted of violence, introducing the death penalty or life sentences in certain cases.

At least 89 people have been killed in Bahrain since the protests began, according to the International Federation for Human Rights.

Source: AFP