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Bahraini government cracks down

Read this article from Al Jazeera covering the protesters in Bahrain, who have now seen their government violently put down a non-violent protest.  One imagines that government would note that they have provided the citizenry with free money, they have apologized for the two deaths from earlier this week, and there was no action left to take except to forcefully dispel protesters.  But my feeling (this is an editorial sentence) is that the nature of the crack down, namely its over-use of violence (at least 6 dead), will only bring further protests.  When police fired on a funeral procession, it felt like it might be a galvanizing moment.  This overnight raid feels even more so.  Some excerpts:

“People were attacked while they were sleeping. There was no warning,” Saeed said. “And when they ran, the police attacked them from the direction they fled to.”

“Whoever took the decision to attack the protest was aiming to kill,” Abdul Jalil Khalil, a parliamentarian with the Wefaq bloc said. “This is real terrorism.”

Speaking to Al Jazeera from Salmaniya hospital, the main medical facility in Manama, Maryama Alkawaka of Bahrain Centre for Human Rights, said that she saw dozens of injured demonstrators being wheeled into emergency rooms early on Thursday morning.

Two people had died in police firing on the protesters, prior to Thursday’s deadly police raid. The deaths prompted a rare apology from the king, who in a television appearance 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,” Sheikh Hamad bin Isa Al-Khalifa said.

But Alkwaka, the human rights activist, said that the fresh crackdown on peaceful protesters cast a doubt on the king’s pledge for investigation and calm.

“People are now asking: is this the investigation that the king promised?” she asked

 

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