'Hizbollah links' five arrested in Manama
Manama, March 24, 2011
Five Lebanese men working in a Manama restaurant have been arrested for suspected links to Hizbollah.
They were detained by security forces during an operation on Monday night.
The men, all said to be from the same family, worked at the Al Bairoti Restaurant on Old Palace Avenue.
'One of them worked as a cashier, while the other four were working as waiters,' a waiter working at the restaurant told our sister newspaper Gulf Daily New (GDN).
He said a group of police officers entered the restaurant and took them away.
'We don't have any further information,' he said. 'They were working for a long time in the restaurant.'
According to a report in the Lebanese newspaper Al Akhbar, Bahrain security forces raided the restaurant and arrested the five Lebanese staff, confiscating documents and computers.
It stated the case had been transferred to the military court and the Lebanese men belonged to the same family.
No one from the Lebanese Embassy could be reached for comment yesterday.
More than 5,000 Lebanese people live and work in Bahrain.
The GDN reported yesterday that Gulf Air suspended all flights between Bahrain and Lebanon until Friday. It said the decision was taken following the ongoing situation in the region and consequent reduction in passenger traffic.
Bahrain Air announced on its website that all flights to and from Beirut had been suspended until March 30.
'The decision has been taken for commercial reasons,' it said. 'There has been a considerable reduction in passenger demand.
'Making these flights is no longer viable.'
Bahrain's Foreign Ministry has warned all Bahrainis against travelling to Lebanon, citing terror threats. It also slammed comments attributed to Hizbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah about the unrest in Bahrain as 'blatant interference in Bahrain's internal affairs from terrorist parties'.
The Foreign Ministry has set up hotlines to assist Bahrainis in Lebanon, available on 009613824709 and 009613611936.-TradeArabia News Service