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Bahrain bans mask imports

BAHRAIN has banned imports of a Guy Fawkes mask that is regularly worn by anti-government protesters.

Industry and Commerce Minister Dr Hassan Fakhro issued a decree in an attempt to stop the sale of the so-called "revolution masks".

The decision was taken based on a request by the Interior Ministry and in "public interest", according to information published in the Official Gazette.

It states the ministry has instructed the country's border authorities and ports to step up their efforts to prevent the masks - popularised by the movie V for Vendetta - from being imported.

Bahrain is the second country in the Gulf to have launched a crack down on the product, which has been used globally in protests, including during the Arab Spring in Egypt, Syria and Tunisia.

The UAE last year issued a strict warning for people not to wear the masks ahead of its National Day on December 2, claiming they symbolised resistance to state authority.

The masks are understood to depict Guy Fawkes, one of the best known members of a 1605 Gunpowder Plot, which attempted to blow up London's House of Lords. sandy@gdn.com.bh



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