News / Middle East

Bahrain Arrests 29 Ahead of Protests Anniversary

FILE - An anti-government protester holds a sign reading
FILE - An anti-government protester holds a sign reading "It Is Impossible For The Bahraini People To Give up On Democracy" as he shouts anti-government slogans during a rally in the village of Bilad al-Qadeem south of Manama, Feb. 11, 2014.
Reuters
Bahrain said on Thursday it had arrested 29 people for rioting and vandalism in several villages, the day before the third anniversary of mass protests which could spark more street unrest.
 
Sunni Muslim-ruled Bahrain has been shaken by frequent demonstrations and clashes since mostly Shi'ite Muslim demonstrators took to the streets in February 2011 to call for greater democracy.
 
On Thursday, people burned a car, tried to block traffic and prevented people from going about their daily life, the kingdom's state news agency said, citing the Interior Ministry. They also tried to stop a school bus and tried to close schools, it added.
 
The ministry said it would take action in response to calls to hold rallies and marches, and had stepped up police patrols. Bahrain's main opposition group Al-Wefaq has called for demonstrations to mark the anniversary.
 
The Gulf Arab island is a U.S. ally and has long provided a base for the U.S. Navy's Fifth Fleet.
 
Stalled reconciliation talks between the ruling family and the Shi'ite opposition were recently revived after the intervention of Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad al-Khalifa, seen as a relative moderate in the royal family.
 
However, mistrust between the opposition and the Saudi-backed al-Khalifa family remains high three years after the authorities subdued the first wave of protests.
 
Demonstrators still frequently clash with police in Bahrain, which is caught up in a regional power struggle between Shi'ite power Iran and Sunni heavyweight Saudi Arabia.
 
On Thursday, Bahrain's Foreign Ministry condemned “irresponsible statements” by a spokeswoman for Iran's Foreign Ministry which it said was interfering in Bahrain's internal affairs.
 
In comments on the state news agency, it said it had protested to Iran's charge d'affaires to the kingdom. Iran also summoned Bahrain's charge d'affaires to protest “unfounded anti-Iran allegations” on Thursday, Iran's Press TV reported.
 
Bahrain and other Gulf Arab states often accuse Iran of meddling in the kingdom's internal affairs, including fomenting unrest, a charge Tehran and protesters deny.
 
Iran has broadly lauded the Arab uprisings.

You May Like

Nigeria Incumbent in Tight Spot as Poll Nears

Muhammadu Buhari is running a strong challenge to Goodluck Jonathan, amid a faltering economy and Boko Haram security worries More

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo tells VOA that despite her fame, life is still a struggle as she waits for government's promise of support to arrive More

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

At least seven different indigenous groups in Ratanakiri depend mainly on forest products for their survival, say they face loss of their land, traditional way of life More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More