By Ahmed Abdelsalam, Ahmed Nasser
MANAMA (AA) – A Bahraini court on Tuesday ruled to suspend Bahrain's largest opposition political party and freeze all its assets, the state-run BNA news agency reported.
According to a statement issued by the Justice and Islamic Affairs Ministry, all activities of Bahrain’s Al-Wefaq National Islamic Society, a Shia opposition party, are to be suspended indefinitely.
The court charged the party with disrespecting citizens’ rights; undermining tolerance and coexistence; creating an environment conducive to terror and extremism; and supporting the notion of foreign intervention -- a veiled reference to Shia Iran -- in Bahrain’s internal affairs.
On June 4, Bahraini King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa issued a decree ostensibly aimed at banning the mixing of politics with religion.
Late last month, Al-Wefaq Secretary-General Ali Salman was slapped with nine years behind bars on charges of "incitement" and "insulting the Interior Ministry".
Bahrain has been rocked by revolt since 2011, when pro-democracy protests erupted in the tiny Gulf state as part of the "Arab Spring" uprisings.
The Sunni-led government blames Al-Wefaq for the upheaval, accusing the Shia party of pursuing an "Iranian agenda".
Al-Wefaq, for its part, denies the allegations, saying it wants to see a "constitutional government" set up in the kingdom.
*Anadolu Agency Correspondent Sibel Ugurlu contributed to this story from Ankara.