Unrest brewing in Bahrain as uprising anniversary approaches

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SHAFAQNA –  Tensions are simmering in Bahrain as police have clashed with protesters marking the fourth anniversary of the popular uprising against the ruling Al Khalifa regime.

Mass demonstrations were staged in the Bahraini capital, Manama, and several towns and villages across the kingdom including Sitra, Belad al-Qadeem and Diraz on Friday on the eve of the anniversary of the revolution which started on February 14, 2011.

Police fired tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse protesters in Manama while clashes also broke out in several other towns.

Protesters, who are seeking a democratically-elected government, chanted slogans and called for the downfall of the Al Khalifa regime.

The demonstrators also urged the release of the main opposition leader, Sheikh Ali Salman, who has been under arrest since December last year on charges of inciting regime change.

Bahrainis’ insistence on sovereignty

As the Manama ruling continues its crackdown on protesters, a political analyst told Press TV that Bahrainis are now more adamant in gaining full sovereignty for their country.

“Since 2011, that rule has been broken and the people are now more adamant in achieving full sovereignty of their own land and their own affairs,” Saeed Shehabi, with the Bahrain Freedom Movement from London, said in an interview.

“This is why the regime has imported foreign mercenaries, foreign armies to support it because it is well aware that the people of Bahrain simply do not want them in power,” he added.

Three-day strike

Last week, Bahraini opposition and political activists called for a three-day public strike and general demonstrations to mark the fourth anniversary of their uprising against Al Khalifa dynasty.

The three-day-strike started on Wednesday as people closed businesses and boycotted commercial transactions with the government to make the streets empty of vehicles during the strike.

However, Shehabi believed that the strike is not expected to result in the downfall of the Al Khalifa regime mainly because it enjoys the support of six foreign countries.

“We should not expect that this strike is going to bring the regime to its knees. In fact the people were able to bring the regime, the ruling family to its knees in 2011 within a month. This is when the Saudis rushed to the scene sending their troops across the causeway,” the analyst added.

He noted that the Bahraini people are facing a long battle.

Since mid-February 2011, thousands of protesters have held mass rallies in the Persian Gulf kingdom, demanding the downfall of Al Khalifa regime and establishment of a democratically-elected government.

Manama has been severely criticized by human rights groups for its heavy-handed crackdown on anti-government protesters, which has claimed the lives of scores of people so far.

Source : Presstv.ir

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