(AhlulBayt News Agency) - The Public Prosecution in Bahrain has referred the case of opposition leader Sheikh Ali Salman, and former MPs Sheikh Hassan Sultan and Ali Al Aswad to the High Criminal Court on charges of having "intelligence contacts with Qatar".
The Public Prosecution Office began to move the case forward after the political row between Saudi Arabia, UAE and Bahrain and Qatar. It announced (November 1, 2017) that it had interrogated Sheikh Salman on charges of communicating with the Gulf neighbor.
Bahrain's state television last August broadcast an audio recording in which the Secretary-General of Al-Wefaq Sheikh Ali Salman discussed (March 2011) with Qatari Prime Minister Hamad bin Jassem Al Thani how to reach a peaceful solution that would spare the country bloodshed.
The report of the BICI fact-finding committee, appointed by the King of Bahrain, had stated that Qatar led a multilateral initiative to settle the dispute peacefully in Bahrain.
The three defendants were charged with "establishing foreign intelligence links to commit subversive acts against Bahrain and undermine its political, economic position and national interests with the purpose of overthrowing the regime," according to the Bahrain News Agency (BNA).
The defendants were also accused of passing on "national defence secrets to a foreign country, military secrets and information pertaining to the Kingdom's internal affairs."
The Prosecution said the High Criminal Court set a hearing on November 27 2017) to look into the case.
MP Al-Aswad has confirmed that the Qatari mediation was made with the knowledge of Saudi Arabia and former Foreign Minister Saud Al-Faisal.
He further stressed that Hamad bin Jassem's communications with the opposition were carried out "under the scrutiny of the Royal Court and the highest authority in Bahrain," adding that it is a 6-year-old issue and nothing new.