Two Iranian-backed groups in Bahrain have threatened to launch new attacks on the island if Bahrain goes through with the expected executions of two citizens accused of terrorism.
The group directly threatens more attacks on the Bahraini government and its security forces, as well as declare the United States and the United Kingdom as legitimate targets on the island.
This now makes two Iranian-based leaders of Bahraini militant group Saraya al Ashtar, or the Al Ashtar Brigades, to be designated as global terrorists by the US State Department.
The US Department of State added Saraya al Ashtar, an Iranian-supported group that openly flaunts its Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps affiliation, to its list of global terrorists.
Various Shia militias from around the Middle East have expressed their support or condolences for the Iranian-backed Hezbollah Brigades, which was targeted in unclaimed airstrikes in eastern Syria on Sunday.
Bahrain claims to have broken up a militant cell, which was reportedly linked to Iran. Also captured in the raids was large amounts of explosives, including material to produce IEDs.
The new branding further highlights Saraya al Ashtar’s role within the Iranian-led “Axis of Resistance” in the Middle East.
In recent years, Iran has stepped up its support for various Shia militant groups in the small Sunni-led kingdom. This support has been noted by both Bahraini and American officials.