Bahraini protesters clash with regime forces
Tensions are still simmering in Bahrain. Fresh clashes have broken out between regime forces and protesters angry at the recent execution of three activists.
Local media reported on Wednesday that police and anti-regime protesters faced off overnight in the villages of Akr and al-Nuwaidrat.
The demonstrators were chanting slogans against the Al Khalifah ruling dynasty when police intervened to disperse them.
Meanwhile, Bahraini troops raided several homes and arrested a number of activists.
On January 15, Bahrain executed Abbas al-Samea, 27, Sami Mushaima, 42, and Ali al-Singace, 21, by firing squad. The killings came a week after the Court of Cassation upheld death sentences against the trio over the killing three policemen, including an Emirati officer, in the northern village of al-Daih back in March 2014.
The three had denied the charges.
Meanwhile, Human Rights Watch has also expressed worries that two more Bahraini activists are also at imminent risk of execution.
On December 29, 2014, Bahrain’s Fourth Superior Criminal Court handed down the death penalty to Mohamed Ramadan and Husain Ali Moosa for their alleged involvement in a bombing on February 14, 2014.
During the demonstrations, the protesters chanted slogans in support of prominent Shia cleric Sheikh Issa Qassem and called for all political prisoners to be released from the regime’s prisons.
On June 20, 2016, Bahraini authorities stripped Qassem of his citizenship over accusations that he used his position to serve foreign interests and promote “sectarianism” and “violence.” He has denied the allegations.
The religious leader has been incarcerated ever since.
Since mid-February 2011, Bahrain, a close ally of the US in the Persian Gulf region, has been witnessing almost daily protests demanding that the ruling family relinquish power.
The Al Khalifah regime is engaged in a harsh crackdown on dissent and political opposition. Scores of people have been killed and hundreds of others injured or arrested in the island country.
Bahraini regime forces’ continuous crackdown has drawn widespread international condemnation.