The secretary-general of the main opposition group Al-Wefaq Sheikh Ali Salman, was charged on 28 December with inciting the denigration of another social sect and spreading lies which could jeopardise national security. Al-Wefaq says the charges are politically motivated. With the political process stalled, all sides have been increasingly frustrated; while Salman has often been brought in for questioning, the government’s willingness to charge such a senior opposition figure is a significant development. The official trigger for his prosecution was a sermon delivered at Al-Imam Al-Sadiq mosque in Manama on 27 December, which the state news agency BNA said contained sectarian language and “fuelled acts of rioting, violence and sabotage across Bahrain, which left several on-duty policemen injured”. After being charged, Salman was released, but barred from travelling pending investigation.