Bahraini court postpones verdict against senior Shiite cleric

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SHAFAQNA – A Manama court has postponed a ruling in the case against the chairman of Bahrain’s largest Shiite religious body.

Sayed Majeed Al Meshaal, who heads the Muslim Scholars Council, was arrested in July of last year before being slapped with a long list of charges, in what amounted to three separate cases.

His arrest and charges stem from his participation in a round-the-clock vigil around the home of Bahrain’s highest religious authority, Sheikh Isa Qassim.

Earlier this year, Manama’s security forces placed Sheikh Qassim under house arrest after dismantling the sit-in.

Sayed Al Meshaal was already given jail time in two of the cases and now faces an additional two and a half years in prison over the third case.

The jailing and harassment of Shiite clerics in Bahrain has become increasingly commonplace in recent months, drawing a wave of condemnation from rights groups and the UN.

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