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Bahrain shuts down two news websites

Websites and BlackBerry news service not licensed to act as news outlets

The suspension order is part of a wider crackdown on dissent in the Kingdom.
The suspension order is part of a wider crackdown on dissent in the Kingdom.

Bahrain authorities have ordered two news websites Bahrain Breaking News and the Muhannad Group websites to stop operations in the Kingdom.

The sites, which include a BlackBerry news service, were ordered to stop publishing news as they are not licensed by Bahrain's Information Affairs Authority (IAA) to act as press offices.

In a statement released by the Bahrain News Agency, Dr Abdulla Abdulrahman Yateem, Publications and Publishing director general, said: "The decision is in line with the IAA drive to enforce the laws and regulations."

On Monday the IAA announced that it would crack down on ‘rogue' websites in the Kingdom. In a statement, the IAA said that it would block sites that were responsible for spreading unrest.

"We will spare no efforts in taking legal actions against these websites, should they continue flouting rules and regulations," the IAA said. "These dubious websites will never succeed in these heinous designs. No one, whoever he is, will compromise Bahrain's bright image. These sites have been blocking for diffusing controversial articles jeopardizing national unity and fuelling sectarianism."

The crackdown is part of an ongoing campaign in Bahrain. Earlier this month the founder of popular forum BahrainOnline.org,Ali Abdulemam, arrested by the National Security Agency.