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Bahrain court clears prominent opposition figure of charges in high-profile case

A lawyer for a senior Bahraini opposition figure says his client has been cleared of all charges in a closely watched case in the strategic Gulf island nation.

Khalil al-Marzooq, a former deputy parliament speaker, faced allegations of instigating violence and having links to a protest faction that authorities blame for bombings and other attacks. He is a prominent member of al-Wefaq, the main political bloc of Bahrain's Shiite majority.

Lawyer Jalila al-Sayed said al-Marzooq was acquitted Wednesday following a brief hearing.

Bahrain is a Western ally that is home to the U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet. It has faced low-level unrest, including street clashes between anti-government protesters and police, since its majority Shiites led large-scale protests against the Sunni monarchy in 2011.