Reacting to reports by some news agencies about the arrest of a number of rioters and vandals before the hosting of Formula One, Chief of Public Security Major-General Tariq Al Hassan has said that as part of the police duty to maintain security and stability in Bahrain and enforce the law, a number of rioters and vandals had been arrested for taking part in illegal rallies and gatherings, hindering public and private interests by blocking roads and endangering people’s lives by attacking them as well as policemen with Molotov cocktails, iron rods and stones.
He said that legal action was taken against them in coordination with the Public Prosecutor, and the arrests were made after an investigation and identification of the suspects. Legal steps are being taken against those people whose involvement in riots and acts of vandalism has been proven, so as to refer them to the Public Prosecutor.
The Chief of Public Security said that such acts of vandalism did not come under the definition of freedom of expression protected by the law. Instead, they are considered acts causing chaos which are against civilised behaviour and endanger civil peace. He affirmed that maintaining security and peace among the public and ensuring their safety as well as the safety of public and private property were the top priorities for security men and any violation was tackled by police with zero tolerance. Any activities which violate the law are tackled firmly according to legal regulations and the authority of police, he said.