News / Middle East

Bahrain Arrests 29 Ahead of Protests Anniversary

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.
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

For Lebanon-based Refugees, Desperation Fuels Perilous Passage

In a war that has caused an estimated three million people to flee Syria, efforts to make perilous sea journey in search of asylum expected to increase More

South African Brewer Tackles Climate Change

Mega-brewer SAB Miller sent delegates to climate summit in Peru, says it is one of many private companies taking their own steps to fight climate change More

Indonesia Reports Increase in Citizens Joining Islamic State

Officials say more than 350 of its citizens are now in Syria or Iraq to fight with Islamic State - 50 more than last month More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Will Pakistan School Shooting Galvanize Pakistan Against Extremism?i
X
Ayesha Tanzeem
December 17, 2014 11:54 AM
The attack on a military school in Pakistan’s northwest city of Peshawar left 141 dead, including 132 children. Strong statements of condemnation poured in from across the world. The country announced three days of mourning, and the leadership, both political and military, promised retribution. VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem looks at how likely the Pakistani government is to clamp down on all extremist groups.
Video

Video Will Pakistan School Shooting Galvanize Pakistan Against Extremism?

The attack on a military school in Pakistan’s northwest city of Peshawar left 141 dead, including 132 children. Strong statements of condemnation poured in from across the world. The country announced three days of mourning, and the leadership, both political and military, promised retribution. VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem looks at how likely the Pakistani government is to clamp down on all extremist groups.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video Turkey's Authoritarianism Dismays Western Allies

The Turkish government has been defiant in the face of criticism at home and abroad for its raids targeting opposition media. The European Union on Monday expressed dismay after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan lashed out at Brussels for criticizing his government's action. Turkey's bid to be considered for EU membership has been on hold while critics accuse the NATO ally of increasingly authoritarian rule. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video US-China Year in Review: Hong Kong to Climate Change

The United States is pushing for a code of conduct to resolve territorial disputes in the South China Sea as it works to improve commercial ties with Beijing. VOA State Department correspondent Scott Stearns reports on a year of U.S. policy toward China from Hong Kong to climate change.
Video

Video Japanese Leader’s Election Win Raises Potential for Conflict with Neighbors

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his allies easily won a two-thirds majority in parliament Sunday, even though the country has slipped into recession under his conservative policies. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from Seoul, that the prime minister’s victory will empower him to continue economic reforms but also pursue a nationalist agenda that will likely increase tensions with Japan’s neighbors.
Video

Video Nuba Mountain Families Hide in Caves to Escape Aerial Bombings

Despite ongoing peace talks between Sudan's government and the rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North, or SPLM-N, daily aerial attacks continue in South Kordofan province’s Nuba Mountains. Adam Bailes was there and reports for VOA that government forces are targeting civilian areas, rather than military positions, with their daily bombardments.

All About America

AppleAndroid