Saturday, April 30, 2011

Bahrain deploys tanks in Diraz

Bahraini protesters are calling for an end to the rule of the Al Khalifa dynasty

Source: Press TV

Saudi-backed Bahraini forces have deployed tanks and armored vehicles in Diraz, shortly after attacking a peaceful protest march in the western village of Karzakan.

Witnesses say regime forces fired live bullets and tear gas at anti-government protesters and that army helicopters have been flying over protesters in Karzakan on Friday. There were no immediate reports of casualties or arrests.

Also on Friday, the regime forces besieged the northwestern village of Diraz with tanks and heavy military vehicles.

Meanwhile, pro-regime thugs backed by police stormed Dair village.

Despite a martial law and the brutal crackdown on anti-government protests, hundreds of protesters took to the streets in several Bahraini cities following the Friday Prayers, demanding an end to the rule of the Al Khalifa dynasty.

They also condemned the Manama regime's violent crackdown on demonstrators.

On Thursday, a military court in Bahrain sentenced four anti-government protesters to death and three years to life in prison for their alleged involvement in the killing of two police officers last month.

Bahrain's Center for Human Rights says the charges brought against the four protesters are politically motivated and rights activists have questioned the trial's legality.

The verdicts have also caused international outrage with the European Union and the Lebanese resistance movement Hezbollah strongly condemning the death sentences, describing them as deplorable.

"Such a judgment is a continuation to the crime committed by the regime in Bahrain against its people," Hezbollah said in a statement.

"The reality of matters shows that these judgments are political and not judicial, the regime's attempt to [show] it is a judicial [matter] will not succeed in hiding the truth of what the Bahrain people are [suffering] from. They are being oppressed because they are demanding their legitimate rights," the statement added.

Dozens of protesters have been killed and scores of others have been injured since the uprising began in Bahrain in mid February.

Many journalists, bloggers, doctors, lawyers and opposition activists have also been arrested as part of a widespread crackdown on anti-regime protests.

Protesters are demanding an end to the 40-year rule of the Al Khalifa dynasty.

Protesters say they will continue their street demonstrations until their demands for freedom, constitutional monarchy as well as a proportional voice in the government are met.

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