Last updated: 17 July, 2011

Bahrain opposition pull out of talks

Bahrain’s main Shiite opposition bloc, Al-Wefaq, said on Sunday it was pulling out of a “national dialogue” with the government on political reform because the initiative was not serious.

Khalil al-Marzuk, who led the bloc’s delegation to the talks, told AFP that Al-Wefaq had decided to pull out and the decision would be confirmed on Monday by its Shura (consultative) council, or leadership.

Since the July 2 launch of the national dialogue, aimed at political reforms after Shiite-led protests were crushed in a bloody crackdown in March, Al-Wefaq has called for a government led by a parliamentary majority.

Al-Wefaq has stressed it is not calling for the fall of the regime in Shiite-majority Bahrain, which is ruled by the Sunni Muslim Al-Khalifa dynasty.