Bahrain''s opposition leader sentenced to 9 years in prison

BahrainUpdated: Jun 14, 2016, 02:33 AM IST
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The 50-year-old was originally convicted in July 2015, drawing condemnation from human rights groups as well as both the United States and Iran. Demonstrators have taken to the streets on multiple occasions to demand his release. Photograph:(Reuters)
A Bahrainian appeals court today sentenced the country`s top opposition leader Shaikh Ali Salman to nine years in prison.

The verdict for Salman, secretary general of the main opposition group, Al Wefaq National Islamic Society, was announced at a hearing attended by rights activists, diplomats and other officials, amid tight security, Xinhua news agency reported.

"Salman has been sentenced for a nine-year jail term, which the society feels is unacceptable," Al Wefaq said in a statement following the court verdict.

He was last sentenced in 2015 to four years in prison for spreading sectarianism and inciting others to break the law, among other charges.