DUBAI  - A Bahraini appeals court on Wednesday commuted to life imprisonment the death sentences of two Shia convicted of killing two policemen during last year's unrest, lawyers said. Ali Abdullah Hasan al-Singace and Abdul Aziz Hussein, who were sentenced by a special Bahraini court in May last year, will now be jailed for life. The court reduced the terms of four others held over the same case from life imprisonment to 15 years in jail, the lawyers said. A seventh defendant, whose sentence was also commuted to 15 years behind bars, remains at large. The group, all Shias, was accused of running over two policemen, Kashif Ahmed Manzur and Mohammed Farouk Abdulsamad, during the uprising in the Sunni-ruled kingdom.

 Their trial began on April 17 last year, with state media reporting at the time that the defendants were accused of committing voluntary homicide of public officials with "terrorist" intentions. The national safety court's verdict the next month drew international condemnation, with Amnesty International urging Bahrain to scrap the executions. The court was set up under a state of national safety, a lower level of emergency law declared by King Hamad in mid-March 2011. In June the same year, the king lifted the measure.