MUSCAT: Thousands of South Asian labourers working on the expansion of Muscat airport resumed work yesterday after authorities agreed to improve safety conditions at the site, workers said. A company official and workers said thousands of labourers had downed tools on Tuesday demanding better safety conditions after a colleague was killed in an accident. But the company said the workers were given the day off to mourn for the deceased colleague. “We are assured by the company that an investigation is being conducted and safety issues will be improved at the airport,” Mohan Raman, a BEB worker said. “That is the reason we are back to work today.”
Bahrain detains six
over anti-govt tweets
MANAMA: The public prosecutor’s office in Bahrain says six people have been detained for allegedly defaming the country’s ruler on Twitter. The six, who were not identified, join a growing list of anti-government activists caught up in an Internet crackdown by authorities in the Sunni-ruled Gulf nation. Bahrain has seen nearly two years of unrest over demands by the country’s majority Shias for a greater political voice. The six were detained over the past couple of days and the prosecutor’s statement yesterday said they will be charged with misusing Twitter and insulting King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa.
Ex-Algeria police chief sentenced to death
ALGIERS: An Algeria court sentenced a former police commissioner to death yesterday for murdering a woman colleague and concealing the evidence of his crime, media reports said. Abdelkrim Boutrik, formerly police chief in Adrar more than 1,500km from Algiers, cut the throat of 32-year-old police officer Cherifa Hadj Brahim in a remote desert area in July 2010 and hid the evidence. The APS news agency said that after first denying any involvement in the killing, Boutrik was confronted by witness testimony and scientific evidence including on “his relations” with the victim. El Watan daily said in its online edition that Boutrik was also implicated in a vast network of alcohol trafficking, and that the murdered policewoman had “irrefutable evidence” of his involvement.
Kurd rebels free Turkish prisoners
CIZRE, Turkey: Kurdish rebels yesterday freed eight Turkish prisoners in response to a new peace push by Ankara to end a 29-year-old insurgency in southeast Turkey. Speaking during an official visit to Sweden, Turkish President Abdullah Gul said it was “joyful” news that the eight were finally returning home from captivity in northern Iraq. “If violence, weapons are abandoned, we can easily move on from security policies to reforms,” he was quoted by Anatolia news agency as telling reporters.Agencies