Bahrain Rights Activist Says 2 Americans Detained

Published February 11, 2012 5:45PM (EST)

MANAMA, Bahrain (AP) — A Bahraini rights activists says two Americans have been detained as part of security crackdowns before the first anniversary of the anti-government uprising in the Gulf kingdom.

Nabeel Rajab, president of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights, says the pair was taken into custody Saturday. The U.S. Embassy says it is looking into the reports. The names of the detainees were not immediately confirmed.

Security forces have stepped pressure before the Feb. 14 anniversary of the start of Shiite-led protests seeking a greater political voice in the strategic island nation, ruled by a Sunni monarchy that hosts the U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet.

Bahrain's king has offered some concessions, but protesters demand the monarchy give up its near monopoly on power.

(This version CORRECTS APNewsNow; Corrects that Bahrain is ruled by a Sunni monarchy not Shiites in the 3rd paragraph)

By Salon Staff

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