Clinton expresses 'deep concern' about situation in Bahrain

February 18, 2011 11:16 am 

WASHINGTON, Feb. 18 — U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Thursday expressed "deep concern" about deadly clashes in Bahrain and called for restraint as the Gulf kingdom is grappling with anti-government protests.

She told Bahrain's Foreign Minister Sheikh Khaled bin Ahmed al-Khalifa by phone about the United States' "deep concerns about the actions of the security forces," and called for "restraint from the government to keep its commitment to hold accountable those who have utilized excessive force against peaceful demonstrators."

U.S. State Department spokesman Mark Toner told reporters that the U.S. charge d'affaires in the kingdom has also delivered the same message to senior Bahraini officials.

Four protesters were killed and dozens wounded after anti-riot police stormed the Pearl Square in central Manama on Thursday. The Bahraini army said in a statement the same day that tough measures will be used to keep stability of the country.

Bahrain is home to the U.S. Navy's Fifth Fleet. The U.S. Defense Department on Thursday called on all parties in Bahrain to exercise restraint and refrain from violence. (PNA/Xinhua)

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