WORLD NEWS

Denmark PM to Bahrain: release jailed activist

Apr 10, 2012, 7:32 PM

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) – Denmark’s prime minister has urged Bahrain to release a jailed activist with dual citizenship, saying he’s in “very critical” condition after a two-month hunger strike.

Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt’s assessment of Abdulhadi al-Khawaja’s health contrasted with Bahrain’s statement that he showed no signs of critical medical problems.

Thorning-Schmidt told reporters Tuesday that Denmark is using its international contacts to press for his release.

“What we’re hearing now is that al-Khawaja’s condition is very critical. And we continue our efforts at all levels,” she said.

Al-Khawaja and other opposition leaders were sentenced to life in prison on anti-state crimes last year as Bahrain imposed martial law to quell political unrest.

Denmark’s Foreign Ministry said the Danish ambassador to Bahrain visited al-Khawaja at a military hospital in Manama on Tuesday.

“They talked for about 20 minutes,” said Ole Egberg Mikkelsen, a Danish Foreign Ministry official, adding the embassy was awaiting approval for another visit Wednesday.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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Denmark PM to Bahrain: release jailed activist