Bahrain puts three to death in first executions since 2010

Protesters in Bahrain block a road following news of the executions Credit: AP

The Gulf state of Bahrain, a UK ally, has carried out its first executions in nearly seven years, putting to death three men found guilty of a deadly bomb attack.

The three were executed by firing squad on Sunday, Bahrain's public prosecution said, the first executions in the country since July 2010 and the first involving Bahraini citizens since 1996.

The deaths provoked outrage from rights groups and political opponents who say the charges against the men, all of them Shia, were politically motivated.

Activists shared images supposedly of the bodies of the executed men online, and some parts of the country saw minor protests after news of the executions broke.

The men - Abbas al-Samea, Sami Mushaima and Ali al-Singace - had been found guilty of a 2014 bomb attack that killed an Emirati police officer and two Bahraini policemen.

Activists allege that testimony used against the men was obtained by torture.

In 2011 Bahrain, which is ruled by a Sunni monarchy, was best by protests as part of the Arab Spring, but government forces crushed the uprising with help from allies Saudi Arabia and the UAE.