Britain calls for restraint from Bahrain, neighbours

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Britain called Tuesday for restraint from all sides in Bahrain after its Gulf neighbours sent in hundreds of troops to support its royal family in the face of opposition protests.

The call came after a member of the Bahraini security forces was killed when he was run over by a protester's car in the south of the country on Tuesday.

Britain's embassy in Bahrain has closed until further notice, and the Foreign Office has changed its advice to warn against all travel to the country.

Prime Minister David Cameron's spokesman told reporters: "Clearly we are concerned about the escalation of the situation in Bahrain and we would call on all parties to exercise restraint.

"Intervention by Gulf countries at the request of the Bahrain government needs to be consistent with that."

The spokesman added: "Our position has been consistent throughout, that right across the region governments should respond to calls for change with reform, not repression."

Hundreds of Saudi-led armoured troops rolled into Bahrain on Monday in response to a request for help from the Bahraini monarchy. The United Arab Emirates confirmed it had contributed about 500 police to the coalition force.

© 2011 AFP

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