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Blast kills policeman in Bahrain village: Ministry

Police and crime scene officials are seen near scene where a blast killed one and seriously injured two police officers in the village of Diraz west of Manama, Bahrain, June 19, 2017. (REUTERS)

DUBAI: A blast in the home village of a Shiite leader in Bahrain has killed a member of the security services and wounded two others, Bahrain’s Interior Ministry has announced it on its Twitter account, blaming “terrorists.”
There were no more immediate details on the blast in Diraz village, which is home to Ayatollah Isa Qassim and has been a flashpoint for violence. Five people were killed during a police raid on the village on May 23.
The February 14 Youth Coalition, which has claimed attacks in the past, posted a video online it said showed its masked members throwing gasoline bombs at police gathered near the home of Qassim. The group is named after the date of the start of Bahrain’s 2011 Arab Spring protests.
The government said the aim of the raid in May was to arrest suspected militants and others wanted on security charges. At least 286 were detained as they confronted advancing police, who used tear gas and birdshot.
Qassim faces expulsion from the kingdom after authorities revoked his citizenship last year for alleged links to Iran and fomenting violence, charges he has denied.
The raid and subsequent arrests increased tensions in Bahrain, days after US President Donald Trump said Washington’s relationship with the kingdom would improve.
The island is home to the US Navy’s 5th Fleet and an under-construction British naval base.

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