Bahrain cuts diplomatic ties with Iran

Manama, Jan 4 (IANS) Bahrain on Monday announced that it was severing diplomatic ties with Iran, amid outrage over the Saudi execution of a Shia cleric.

Bahrain has also asked the Iranian diplomats to leave the kingdom within 48 hours, Xinhua news agency reported.

“Bahrain has decided to end diplomatic relations with Iran because of its continuous interference in the affairs of the kingdom, and also of the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council),” state-run Bahrain News Agency quoted an official statement as saying.

On Sunday, Saudi Arabia severed its diplomatic relations with Iran after angry protesters stormed its embassy in Tehran to protest over the execution of prominent Shia cleric Nimr al-Nimr.

Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir accused the Iranian authorities of not taking any measure to prevent the attacks against the embassy in Tehran and the consulate in the Iranian city of Mashhad.

On Saturday, the Saudi interior ministry announced that al-Nimr and 46 other men were executed on January 1 over terror charges.

The executions triggered angry protests outside the Saudi embassy in Tehran on Saturday by Iranians who condemned the execution of Nimr.

Most of the executed were Saudis who were involved in a series of attacks carried out by Al Qaeda from 2003-06.

Nimr was seen as a driving force behind anti-government protests that broke out in the country in 2011.

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