US wanted ‘derogatory’ information on Bahrain king’s sons: Wikileaks

Friday, February 18, 2011

WASHINGTON - The US State Department had secretly approached its diplomats in Bahrain to find out any “derogatory” information about King Hamad’s sons, and also report whether there existed any kind of “rivalry” between the two brothers, the whistleblower website Wikileaks has revealed.

The office of Hillary Clinton was eager to know if Prince Nasir bin Hamad al Khalifa or Prince Khalid bin Hamad al Khalifa took drugs, drank alcohol or “caused problems” within the monarchy.

“Is there a rivalry between (either) Prince and Crown Prince Salman? If so, what is the nature of this rivalry? Has it caused problems within the family?” The Telegraph quoted the leaked cable, as saying.

Clinton’s office had also asked whether the princes had any friends among the country’s Shia Muslim majority, adding: “What are his views on how the ruling family should address the Shia majority in Bahrain? Is there any derogatory information for either prince? Does either prince drink alcohol? Does either one use drugs?”

Besides this information, the US embassy staff in Manama were also asked to report about their basic biographical details including date of birth, ability to speak English and educational background.

Prince Nasir, 23, who is serving in the Bahrain Defence Force, and Prince Khalid, 21, are King Hamad’s sons by his second wife and there have been fears in the region that hardliners from neighbouring countries might try to influence them, the paper said.(ANI)

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