MANAMA -- Showing sympathy or any form of favouritism toward Qatar on social media or through any other means is a crime punishable by law in the Kingdom of Bahrain, the Bahraini Interior Ministry warned Thursday.

In a statement carried by the Bahrain News Agency, BNA, the ministry said the measures come in line with the firm stance taken by the Kingdom of Bahrain and other Gulf and Arab nations to sever diplomatic ties with Qatar as a result of its hostile acts against Bahrain, its violation of Gulf and Arab values and breach of the principles of international law.

"As a sovereign right of Bahrain, any show of sympathy or favouritism for the Qatar government or objection to Bahrain's action on the social media in the form of tweets, posts or any spoken or written word will be considered a crime punishable under the Penal Code and will lead to a jail term of up to five years and fine," said the statement.

Source: Emirates News Agency