Bahrain anti-dictatorship movement continues

This video is about a protest march along Budaiya Highway, Bahrain, 14 September 2012.

From EA WorldView blog:

Bahrain 1st-Hand: A Protest Weekend in Sanabis

Matthew Cassel writes for Al Jazeera English:

“We need supplies,” said the doctor, “Who can go get them?” One activist, a computer engineer in his 20s, quickly volunteered and invited me to go with him. It was nearly midnight and the injuries were piling into the makeshift medical clinic in a home in the Sanabis village, a suburb of Manama, the Bahraini capital. Injured protesters couldn’t be brought to hospitals or medical centres where they’d likely be arrested, so they were treated inside the villages. Volunteer medics were out of burn ointment and IV syringes, and needed someone to bring them from another makeshift clinic on the other side of the village.

There was a rare silence outside on the street. The protesters, mostly shabab (youth), had been dispersed only minutes earlier when dozens of police stormed through firing tear gas, rubber bullets and bird shot. The stench of gas still lingered; it never really disappeared fully from Sanabis during the two days of protests there.

We left the house into the streets. Some stone-carrying shabab were starting to return to the main crossings in central Sanabis, standing over broken glass and spent tear gas cartridges – all clearly marked “made in USA” — waiting for the police to return.

We passed through the narrow alleyways, some barely wide enough for a car to pass through. Some parts were well lit with the bright orange glow of the street lights, others pitch black. Some areas were tight giving a sense of protection, while others were more open, leaving us completely exposed for a number of seconds when anything could happen. We could only hope as we approached the next street corner that there wouldn’t be any police waiting around it, while we kept looking backwards to make sure there were none there either. Too fast and we would come upon them with no place to run, too slow and we’d get caught from behind.

In the chance that we did see police, which was more likely than not, we knew it’d already be too late. Their uniforms are unmistakable: blue bodysuits topped with bright white helmets. We had seen their weapons cause countless injuries all day long, and if we were spotted they’d fire at us. Up ahead atop a roof a couple of shabab on lookout waved to let us know the coast is clear. At the next crossing another group motioned for a signal to know if there are any white hats from where we just came.

As we continued to creep along in the shadows an abaya-clad woman peaked through the crack of her front door. “Come in,” she whispered waving her arms for us to get off the street, “do you need anything?” “Thank you, hajjiyyah, we are okay,” the runner whispered back, continuing his mission.

More than seven months after it began with marches of tens of thousands to Manama and sit-ins at the now-destroyed Pearl roundabout, this is what the Bahrain uprising has become.

Witnesses in Bahrain say riot police have clashed with anti-government protesters in the heart of the Gulf kingdom’s capital, leading to several injuries and arrests: here.

Bahrain Letter: Detained Zainab Alkhawaja Accepts Freedom Award “For The People Who Fight Against All Odds”: here.

Bahrain arrested 29 people in the commercial district of the capital Manama on Friday as anti-government protesters marched in the city centre in defiance of a government ban, state media said late on Friday: here.

A court in Bahrain has sentenced the prominent pro-democracy activist, Zainab al-Khawaja, to two months in prison: here.

Towards Justice in Bahrain: The UN Human Rights Council must ensure Bahrain is accountable for its human rights record: here.

Bahrain, one of the Arab Spring countries, has been in the international news recently, owing to the controversy over Britain’s decision to grant Sheik Nasser bin Hamad al-Khalifa, one of King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa’s six sons and the head of Bahrain’s Olympic Committee, a visa for the London Olympics: here.

More than a quarter of the Middle East’s young population will be unemployed in the next five years, a Bahraini minister said yesterday. Labour Minister Jameel Humaidan revealed youth unemployment in the region would be double the global average by 2017, as he addressed a conference in Manama: here.

Revealed: the UK companies which applied to export small arms, artillery & ammo to Bahrain before the uprising: here.

Court no 6 at Westminster Magistrates in London was the setting of the final hearing in the case of Ali Mushaima and Mussa Mohammad vs the Crown but to understand why the men were facing serious charges related to their audacious protest on top of the roof of the Bahraini Embassy, you had to go back to April 16th this year: here.

Riot police in Bahrain have opened fire on Shia protesters following the funeral of a youth killed during street battles with the security forces on Friday: here.

Bahrain: Abuse of Migrant Workers Despite Reforms: here.

10 thoughts on “Bahrain anti-dictatorship movement continues

  1. September 21st, 2012

    12:00 AM ET

    Massive minesweeping exercise begins off Bahrain

    By Chis Lawrence

    More than three dozen nations have converged on the seas around Bahrain for a massive military minesweeping exercise.

    The at-sea maneuvers will involve a series of techniques and involve surface ships, aircraft, and underwater “explosive ordnance disposal” diving teams during the nearly two weeks of International Mine Countermeasure Exercise.

    Remote piloted submersibles, known as unmanned underwater vehicles, or UUVs, will get their most sustained test yet in combination with regular forces.

    The U.S. military says these exercises are strictly “defensive,” but the show of force in light of Iran’s threats to mine the Strait of Hormuz is hard to ignore.

    In a typical week, officials say more than 500 ships will sail through the Strait, carrying everything from oil to natural gas.

    The United States has been promoting the fact that more than 30 nations are participating in the exercises.

    But CNN has learned that so far, two thirds of those nations do not want to have their participation made public. And only half a dozen or so will send actual ships to the exercise.

    The situation suggests that in any real minesweeping scenario, or conflict with Iran, the U.S. military would bear the brunt of the fight.

    The United States has a lot of naval power in the region. But the American military is careful not to unnecessarily provoke Iran, especially with tensions so high after toughened economic sanctions and much talk in the U.S. and Israel about whether Iran’s progress in developing nuclear capabilities will warrant military action to stop it.

    “Any action can instantly trigger a disproportionate reaction, and we have to be aware of that,” Vice Adm. Ted Carter told CNN. The U.S. military is trying to strike a balance between protecting the free transit of the waterway, while avoiding an inadvertent conflict with Iran.

    In an indication of how sensitive the waterway has become, some U.S. Navy ships passing through the Strait of Hormuz are equipping their guns with cameras.

    The gargantuan aircraft carrier USS Enterprise, on its last cruise, has made eight trips through the Strait on its current deployment. Crew members showed us where they strap small cameras to each gun when nearing certain ports or passing by certain areas in the Strait.

    Vice Adm. Ted Carter told CNN, “If anything were to happen, we want to have video evidence of it as much as we can. So that when we say ‘This is what happened,’ the video shows we mean what we say, and that we’re telling the truth about what went on.”


  2. Protesters, police clash in Bahrain’s capital


    Associated Press / September 21, 2012

    MANAMA, Bahrain (AP) — Witnesses in Bahrain say riot police have clashed with anti-government protesters seeking to shift their demonstrations to the heart of the Gulf kingdom’s capital.

    Security forces fired tear gas and stun grenades in street battles near the historic markets and narrow streets in the center of Manama.

    The clashes Friday mark the second such violence in Manama in the past month as Shiite-led protesters try to rattle the Sunni monarchy by bringing rallies back into the capital. Most clashes in recent months have occurred in outlying areas.

    More than 50 people have been killed in unrest since February 2011 between Bahrain’s Western-backed rulers and majority Shiites seeking a greater political voice.

    © Copyright 2012 Associated Press. All rights reserved.


  3. Tue Sep 25, 2012 12:07am IST

    * Pakistan, Ethiopia, Bahrain slide backwards

    (Reuters) – Government restrictions on the Internet have risen over the past year around the world as regimes use violence against bloggers and turn to censorship and arrest to squelch calls for reform, a new report from a U.S. advocacy group has found.

    Pakistan, Bahrain and Ethiopia saw the biggest rollbacks in Internet freedom since January 2011 and were among the 20 countries out of 47 assessed by Freedom House that declined in their rankings.


  4. Bahrain: Opposition members ‘inspired by Gandhi’

    Protests stopped with violence, they say at Senate meeting

    25 September, 19:02

    (ANSAmed) – ROME, SEPTEMBER 25 – Bahrain’s opposition members who are in Rome today for a meeting with the Italian Senate’s human rights commission said they are inspired by Gandhi, the late leader of the Indian independence movement. ‘In Bahrain we have learnt very well the lesson of Mahatma Gandhi’, said Jasim Hussein, a former MP in Bahrain who is visiting with Hadi Almossawi, also a member of the al-Wefaq party. Al-Wefaq, whose religious orientation is Shiite, is the main opposition force in the country where a growing front has been asking the royal al-Khalifa family for democratic reforms since February 2011.

    ‘Our protest is peaceful’, said Hussein and Almossawi, who were invited to talk by Radical Senator Marco Perduca. ‘Our movement can be compared to the non-violent one of Gandhi. But the state has chosen since the beginning to respond with unprecedented violence’.

    In a year and a half of protests, said the two activists, ‘dozens of demonstrators have been killed by our army and by Saudi troops who have come to help the monarchy. Several thousands of people have been arrested. Hundreds have been tortured during their detention, including athletes and journalists who expressed their support for the protest and have been tortured as a consequence. Dozens of doctors who helped demonstrators were fired, the same fate of 20 university professors. Many students were expelled from the university of Manama (the capital). Not even taxi drivers were spared and had their licences withdrawn’.

    Moreover, in an unprecedented case in a Muslim country, ‘ 35 mosques were destroyed’ said the activists. The mosques were places of worship for Shiite Muslims, the majority in Bahrain, which is dominated by a Sunni elite.

    After an independent investigative commission confirmed violence and abuse, the UN Human Rights Council issued 176 recommendations for Manama, which has mostly accepted them, at least formally. In the next two months, authorities will need to brief the UN on the measures undertaken as a consequence.


  5. Pingback: Bahraini absolute monarchy keeps killing subjects | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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