Iranians condemn raid on Sheikh Isa Qassim residence

(AhlulBayt News Agency) - Participants in today’s Friday Prayers took part in rallies across the country including the capital city, Tehran after the prayers to condemn crimes committed by the Bahraini Al-Khalifa rulers against the people in the country.

Demonstrators chanted slogans against the Saudi and Bahraini regimes and condemned the United States and United Kingdom for their support of the regimes, IRNA reported.

Thousands of protesters attended the rallies to declare their support for the Bahraini top Shia cleric Sheikh Isa Qassim and the Bahraini people.

The Bahraini security forces supported by the Saudi militia, reportedly attacked supporters of Senior Bahraini cleric Sheikh Issa Qassim in the al-Deraz region in the country on May 23.

One person died and 100 more were injured during the attack.

A Bahraini court on May 21, 2017 ordered seizure of Sheikh Issa Qassim's assets and properties and sentenced him to one year in prison.

Since February 14, 2011, thousands of anti-regime protesters have held numerous demonstrations in Bahrain on an almost daily basis, calling on the al-Khalifa rulers to relinquish power.

In March that year, troops from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, themselves repressive Arab regimes, were deployed to the country to assist Manama in its crackdown on protests. Hundreds of Bahraini activists have been imprisoned and suppressed.

On June 20, Bahraini authorities stripped Sheikh Qassim of his citizenship, less than a week after suspending the al-Wefaq National Islamic Society, the country’s main opposition bloc, and dissolving the Islamic Enlightenment Institution founded by Qassim, and the opposition al-Risala Islamic Association.

Over the past few weeks, demonstrators have held sit-in protests outside Sheikh Qassim’s home to denounce his citizenship removal.

Bahrain has also sentenced Sheikh Ali Salman, another revered opposition cleric, to nine years in prison on charges of seeking regime change and collaborating with foreign powers, which he has denied.

Sheikh Salman was the secretary general of the al-Wefaq National Islamic Society, which was Bahrain’s main opposition bloc before being dissolved by the regime.

Things actually seem to be getting worse. The country’s only remotely critical newspaper, Al Wasat, which was shut down in 2011, has now been ordered by the government to close its online edition too after criticizing the executions.