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Bahrain

Bahrain forces storm into home of top Shia cleric

Bahraini security forces have raided the house of prominent Shia cleric Ayatollah Sheikh Issa Ahmed Qassem amid an ongoing crackdown on dissent.

Witnesses say regime forces even took photos of the ID cards of everyone who was inside the house in Diraz, west of the capital Manama.

The raid on the home of the spiritual leader of the opposition al-Wefaq group comes just a few days after people voted in an alternative election held by the main opposition parties of Bahrain.

The opposition had boycotted the parliamentary elections which were held with a low turnout on the same day across the tiny kingdom.

Since mid-February 2011, thousands of protesters have held numerous demonstrations in the streets of Bahrain, calling for the royal family to give up power.

Bahrain has been severely criticized by human rights groups for its harsh crackdown on anti-government protesters which has claimed the lives of scores of people so far.

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