January 17, 2012
Chief of Public Security: Participation in Al Wefaq procession illegal
Chief of Public Security Major-General Tariq Al Hassan
The Chief of Public Security Major-General Tariq Al Hassan announced on Tuesday that Al Wefaq National Islamic Society had submitted a request to the Directorate of the Capital Governorate Police to take out a procession in association with a number of political societies in downtown Manama on Wednesday evening. The proposed procession would march from Ras Ruman Mosque to Bab Al Bahrain.
Major-General Al Hassan said that after reviewing the security plans and the Law on General Assemblies, it was decided not to grant permission for the procession. The location and timing of the proposed march mean the traffic will be hindered, embassies and commercial as well as government organisations may find it difficult to function and the public may be put at risk.
He said that the freedom of expression through gatherings, processions and other public activities should be exercised according to the Constitution and laws of Bahrain. He reminded the public that the Ministry of Interior was responsible for protecting lives and property and maintaining peace.
If the procession goes ahead, it will in violation of the law, Major-General Al Hassan said, adding that legal steps will be taken against violators. He stressed that the holding of public gatherings and freedom of expression were protected under the law, but putting security and public order in jeopardy and harming economic interests of the Kingdom were not allowed and obedience of the law was expected.
Major-General Al Hassan said that police would act within their legal powers to maintain security and to protect both the people and their property.