Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Bahrain's Protests Escalate as Army Attacks Demonstrators

Unlike in Egypt, the Bahraini army has no problem running over the protesters, who are Shias under the Sunni royal family rule. Shias comprise 66% of the population of this island kingdom, according to unofficial estimates. Bahrain is also the home to the US Navy's 5th Fleet.

From Zero Hedge (2/15/2011):

The small country of Bahrain has promptly been displaced in the docket of revolutionary news, by recent developments in Iran. Yet the peace on the Saudi island neighbor is deteriorating as demonstrations escalate. According to ABNA.ir, "Tens of Bahraini Army jeeps surrounded the main square and attacked the protesters. Thousands of Anti-Government protesters filled a main square in the Bahrain capital due to discriminations posed by the government. Security forces at first appeared to hold back as the crowds poured into Pearl Square in Manama. After a while, in an extreme violent action the army released more than 50 war vehicles to the square, which resulted in shameless and violent attacks against the righteous freedom seekers. The dramatic move Tuesday comes just hours after a third protester died in clashes with police in the strategic Island Kingdom, which is home to the U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet." So while we wait for Al Jazeera or anyone else for that matter to start covering the protests in Manama (which could be a while: the world has suddenly developed revolution burn out), below we present a photographic update from the island nation.

Zero Hedge has the photos of the demonstrations from ABNA.ir.

But Tyler is wrong. Al Jazeera, who must be really "revolution-weary", has Bahrain covered. They have a video clip of the protests. Women in Islamic garbs are out there, raising their fists and waving signs, but unlike in Egypt they are not mixed with men-folk.

From Al Jazeera:

Anti-government protesters are continuing to occupy a square in Bahrain's capital, Manama, after two days of violent clashes left at least two demonstrators dead.

The protesters, seeking political reforms and better human rights in the kingdom, are refusing to disperse, despite a rare apology from the king over the deaths in police firing.

An Al Jazeera correspondent in Bahrain, who cannot be named for his own safety, said that thousands of protesters were occupying a major landmark on Wednesday morning.

"They are well organised and say that they will make Manama's Pearl Roundabout Bahrain's version of Egypt's Tahrir Square."

Our correspondent said that some of the protesters were planning a march from the roundabout, while others planned to remain and keep it occupied.

Sheikh Hamad bin Isa Al-Khalifa made a rare television appearance on Tuesday in which he expressed his condolences for "the deaths of two of our dear sons" and said a committee would investigate the killings.

"We will ask legislators to look into this issue and suggest needed laws to resolve it," he said, adding that peaceful protests were legal.

... Al Jazeera's correspondent said that police took a very heavy-handed approach towards the protesters.

"Police fired on the protesters this morning, but they showed very strong resistance," our correspondent said.


Post a Comment