Middle East

Bahraini Prominent Shia Clerics Warn of Massacre

essa_qasimFive top Bahraini Shia clerics have urged the international community to intervene as the violence escalates further following the deployment of foreign troops in the Persian Gulf state.

In a statement released on Tuesday, Sheikh Issa Qassem, Seyyed Abdullah al-Ghoraifi, Sheikh Abdul Hussain al-Setri and Sheikh Mohammad Saleh al-Rabiei warned that a “horrible massacre” is expected at Manama’s Pearl Square, where people are only peacefully  demanding their rights.

The report comes as twelve people martyred and more than 1,000 others were injured on Tuesday in clashes between anti-regime protesters and Bahrain’s security forces.

On Wednesday morning, the Bahraini police, who arrived in tanks and armored vehicles, launched an assault on a group of protesters who had camped out the night before in Manama’s Pearl Square.

The forces, who were backed by army helicopters, managed to take over the square only moments later.

A group of armed men had earlier set fire to the protesters’ tents. Electricity and mobile phone services have been reportedly cut off in large parts of Manama as the political situation in Bahrain escalates further.

The attacks come two days after Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, and Qatar dispatched their armed forces to crisis-hit Bahrain to quash anti-government protests in the tiny Persian Gulf state.

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