Bahrain’s Interior Minister Lieutenant-General Sheikh Rashid bin Abdullah Al Khalifa (photo) met British Home Secretary Amber Rudd, as part of his official visit to the UK.
Bahrain’s Ambassador to the UK, Sheikh Fawaz bin Mohammed Al Khalifa, and the delegation accompanying the Minister attended the meeting, Bahrain News Agency (BNA) reported.
The UK Home Secretary welcomed the Interior Minister and praised the distinguished ties between the two countries.
She also supported Bahrain’s stances and affirmed that Britain was ready to continue constructive cooperation with the Kingdom in security fields.
The Minister appreciated the proactive counter-terrorism initiative by Rudd, referring to her request to the UK parliament to classify outlawed Bahraini groups as terrorist organizations.
He said the security cooperation between the two countries was historical and not something recent.
The Minister briefed Rudd on the security situation in Bahrain and the terrorist threats it is facing, especially with the growing sophistication of terrorist acts and the diversity of methods adopted to execute them.
Fugitive terrorists living in Iran stand behind those crimes in terms of planning and implementation, for which they receive support and financing from the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, thereby training terrorists on the use of weapons and bomb-making, he said.
The Minister agreed with his UK counterpart to review the bilateral security agreement so as to support cooperation related to training and exchange of information, especially on new crimes.
They also affirmed their understanding of the security risks posed by the social media, especially since some people are using them to promote sedition, incitements and crimes.
The meeting also reviewed cooperation and coordination in the fields of security, public safety and the exchange of information in various fields, in addition to issues of common interest and regional developments.
The Minister also met a number of UK MPs. He was welcomed by Lord John Astor and Rehman Chishti, Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party and a member of the Internal Affairs committee.
The Minister thanked the MPs for the important meeting while they welcomed his visit which is part of the continuing interaction and exchange of views. They appreciated the positive steps taken by Bahrain and praised the Bahrain-UK ties.
The MPs also thanked the Kingdom for hosting the UK Naval Facility headquarters and the distinguished ties between the two countries that go back 200 years.
The Minister also praised the strong historical ties which, he said, marked the foundation to reinforce cooperation and move towards counter-terrorism efforts. He also appreciated the high level of security cooperation and thanked the UK Parliament for classifying outlawed Bahraini groups as terrorist organizations.
He said this could prompt others to take similar steps against terrorist organizations and groups working against Bahrain’s security and stability, as part of international counter-terrorism efforts.
The Minister briefed the MPs on the security situations in Bahrain and the challenges facing its counter-terrorism efforts.
He held an open discussion with them on issues of shared interest.