7th APRIL 2015 - Vol.XXXVIII No.018
Local News

Bani Jamra blast suspects arrested

POLICE have arrested 10 suspects in connection with a bomb blast that injured seven officers, three of them critically, late on Wednesday.

The GDN reported yesterday that the home-made device exploded in Bani Jamra, which has been the scene of repeated attacks on police.

Public Security chief Major General Tariq Al Hassan said seven suspects were initially arrested in the early hours of yesterday, and three others were arrested later.

The policemen targeted were on patrol when they were caught in the blast from an Improvised Explosive Device (IED).

Sources told the GDN that rioters blocked roads in the area at around 8.30pm and reports have suggested that the officers were clearing debris when the bomb went off.

Police imposed a tight security cordon around the village yesterday and people were prevented from entering or leaving the area until noon, while investigations were underway.

Residents of Bani Jamra, who have grown accustomed to hearing sound bombs and tear gas canisters being fired during clashes between police and rioters, said even they were shocked by the deafening explosion.

However, they declined to be identified due to fears that they could in turn be targeted.

"I am used to hearing sound grenades and the firing of tear gas canisters, but the explosion was too loud," said a 32-year-old Bahraini woman who lives near the site of the blast.

"It is the first time I have heard such a thing in my life.

"From its volume I am certain that the whole of Budaiya Highway heard it.

"My heart stopped and if I hadn't take a deep breath, I would have fainted. To be honest, remembering that I was just a few metres away makes me feel dizzy."

A 45-year-old Bahraini housewife said the blast was so loud that it sounded like an "atomic bomb".

"I was relaxing at home and watching television as usual when I heard something similar to an atomic bomb, which I have only seen or heard about in documentaries," she said.

Meanwhile, a 62-year-old Bahraini housewife said she was certain someone had been killed in the explosion.

"I saw death come from that sound," she said.

"I was desperate for my children to be near me."

The explosion follows a week of violence in Bani Jamra. Last Friday, an armed fugitive tried to shoot police.

Redha Abdulla Isa, who escaped from police custody in May last year, injured two officers as he tried to evade arrest on suspicion of weapons smuggling, making explosives and involvement in a car blast outside Bahrain Financial Harbour in April.

Three other officers were reportedly injured in Bani Jamra when they were fired at by thugs armed with home-made shotguns on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.

Sources told the GDN on Wednesday that security forces had seized 14 home-made shotguns and several ready-made petrol bombs from a farm in Bani Jamra.

Two policemen were injured early on Tuesday when they came under attack from dozens of thugs armed with Molotov cocktails in nearby Duraz.

Video footage of the assault uploaded to the Internet showed them being kicked, punched and pelted with Molotov cocktails at point blank range.

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