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Bahrain Military Sales Approved By U.S. Despite Rights Concerns

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Bahraini protesters carry symbolic coffins with pictures of victims of the government crackdown on ongoing opposition protests in the Shiite village of Barbar on the western outskirts of the Bahraini capital Manama on May 4, 2012. (AFP/Getty Images) | Getty Images

WASHINGTON, May 11 (Reuters) - The United States will resume some military sales to Bahrain despite human rights concerns after more than a year of protests against the island kingdom's rulers, the U.S. State Department said on Friday.

The Obama administration notified Congress that certain sales would be allowed for Bahrain's defense force, coast guard and national guard, although it would maintain a hold on TOW missiles and Humvees for now, the department said in a statement.

"We have made the decision to release additional items to Bahrain mindful of the fact that there are a number of serious unresolved human rights issues that the government of Bahrain needs to address," the statement said. (Reporting By Andrew Quinn; Editing by Bill Trott)