Protect policemen!

AUTHORITIES have been urged to arm policemen on the streets in a bid to protect them, following a bomb attack on seven officers.MPs yesterday demanded the Interior Ministry use tougher measures to deal with saboteurs after Monday’s attack in Eker, which left three critical.

They held a closed door meeting with Interior Minister Shaikh Rashid bin Abdulla Al Khalifa, who briefed them on the investigation and revealed that at least four suspects were held for questioning.

It is understood a fifth man was later arrested.

MPs slammed the attack during parliament’s weekly session yesterday, with some blaming opposition parties for street violence in Bahrain.

Others called for the US Navy to be questioned following rumours that its personnel were in the area before the attack.

“A few days ago we heard about US Navy personnel’s involvement in some incidents in Bahrain and the bomb used to attack the policemen in Eker is clear evidence that reflects that,” claimed MP Abdulla Bin Howail during the parliament session yesterday.

“It is time that the Interior Ministry uses a fist of steel to deal with criminals terrorising the country, whether through incitement during sermons like those by well-known clergyman (Shi’ite cleric Shaikh Isa Qasim), who asked to crush police, or Al Wefaq National Islamic Society urging people to go on a revolution.”

However, MP Dr Ali Ahmed claimed the ministry’s failure to stop “criminals” on the streets had contributed to the ongoing violence in the country.

“The ministry puts unarmed policemen in front of armed thugs and then issues a statement saying that they are severely hurt, which is the wrong tactic – it is not February 14 Movement or Al Wefaq’s fault,” said Dr Ahmed, who is also Al Menbar Bloc president.

MP Latifa Al Gaoud said those behind the attack were trying to ruin Bahrain’s image in the international arena.

“These criminals want to destroy Bahrain’s image and achievements by any means possible and attacks will not stop until they manage to bring Bahrain down,” she said.

“It is the government’s fault that they are being left without any action being taken to stop them and it is time something is done before Bahrain is lost.”

Meanwhile, Minister of State for Shura Council and Parliament Affairs Abdulaziz Al Fadhel assured MPs that the country’s security was a priority for the government, but police tactics in the field varied based on the situation.

“We are keen to protect the country’s security and are using different measures to deal with any threat,” he told MPs.

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