Bahrainis stage fresh demonstations to show support for Sheikh Isa Qassim
Bahraini protesters have staged a series of fresh anti-regime demonstrations across the Persian gulf kingdom in support of distinguished Shia opposition cleric Sheikh Issa Qassim ahead of his trial session.
On Sunday, the angry demonstrators took to the streets throughout the country, including villages of Sanabis, Muqabah , Markh , As Sahlah, Bilad al-Qadim, Karbabad, Qadam, Karranah, Karzakan , Abu saiba and al Diyah and Nabi Saleh Island.
They held placards and chanted slogans to express their anger against the ruling Al Khalifah regime’s violent crackdown on protesters.
In addition, a large number of protesters also continued a sit-in protest on al-Fada’ Square in Qassim’s native village of Diraz, which has been under siege by regime forces for months.
Bahrain’s judiciary has scheduled a hearing session in the trial of the 77-year-old cleric on February 27 .
A trial session had been scheduled for the senior cleric earlier in the month, but was postponed to February 26 amid fears of a surge in popular outrage.
Senior Bahraini clerics in a statement released on Saturday once again expressed their unwavering support for distinguished Shia cleric.
Last year, Bahraini authorities dissolved the main opposition bloc al-Wefaq National Islamic Society, to which Qassim used to serve as a devoted mentor. They also took away Qassim’s citizenship, accusing him of serving foreign interests and promoting sectarianism and violence.
A vocal critic of the government, Sheikh Qassim has denied the allegations. He has been siding with opposition activists since anti-regime protests started sweeping the country in 2011.
Thousands of anti-regime protesters have held demonstrations in Bahrain on an almost daily basis ever since a popular uprising began in the kingdom in mid-February 2011.
They are demanding that the Al Khalifah dynasty relinquish power and allow a just system representing all Bahrainis to be established.
Manama has gone to great lengths to clamp down on any sign of dissent. On March 14, 2011, troops from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates were deployed to assist Bahrain in its crackdown.
Scores of people have lost their lives and hundreds of others sustained injuries or got arrested as a result of the Al Khalifah regime’s crackdown.