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Bahrain National Dialogue to resume Aug 28

Manama, August 26, 2013

Bahrain’s National Dialogue, which began in February, will resume on Wednesday (August 28) despite failing to reach consensus on any key issues before the sessions stopped for the Ramadan break, a report said.

Claims that some participants have been considering withdrawing from the negotiations over increased violence were dismissed by the National Unity Assembly (NUA), which heads the nine-member national coalition of political societies (the Sunni contingent), according to the report in the Gulf Daily News (GDN), our sister publication.

"There are many who are saying that we will postpone our participation because of several reasons in the National Dialogue, but this is not correct," said NUA head Dr Shaikh Abdullatif Al Mahmood yesterday.

"We will participate in the National Dialogue as this is the only way to solve the crisis."

Sources told the GDN the coalition has come under fire from some members, who accuse opposition groups of continuing to support the unrest.

They said the growing tension within the coalition could force members to withdraw from dialogue, but Dr Al Mahmood denied the claims.

"We are not under any sort of pressure and we will continue our participation in the talks," he said.

"I think it is important for all participants to finalise the agenda to go ahead with the dialogue process. I would like to say that violence has not stopped and this is unfortunate.

"All parties should have a common stance to denounce all violent acts and not spread any political agenda."

Meanwhile, opposition groups, led by Al Wefaq National Islamic Society, will meet tomorrow to finalise plans regarding their participation in the talks.

"During this meeting, after consultation with members, we will make our decision regarding participation in the talks," said an Al Wefaq spokesman.

The 24th session of the dialogue will be held at the Isa Cultural Centre and will be headed by three government ministers and also attended by eight National Assembly members. – TradeArabia News Service




Tags: Bahrain | opposition | National Dialogue | National Unity Assembly |

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