al-Wefaq Calls for Boycott
Bahrain’s opposition bloc al-Wefaq says it is going to continue its boycott of a national dialogue over the Al Khalifa regime’s unending crackdown on dissents.
In a statement issued on Sunday, the al-Wefaq National Islamic Society said that the recent release of one of its high-ranking officials is not enough for it to return to the national dialogue.
On October 24, a Bahraini court ordered the release of Khalil al-Marzooq, the deputy secretary-general of al-Wefaq.
Marzooq was charged with “inciting terrorism and promoting acts that constitute crimes of terrorism” in the Persian Gulf nation. He has rejected the charges.
On Friday, thousands of people staged a demonstration near the capital Manama, calling for political reforms in the kingdom.
The Bahrainis held the anti-regime protest rally in solidarity with freelance journalist and photographer Hussain Hubail, who has been in Al Khalifa regime’s custody for nearly three months.
Hubail was arrested on August 1 on charges of taking part in unauthorized protests and campaigning against the Bahraini regime through social networks.
Clashes broke out between the protesters and Saudi-backed security forces during Friday’s demonstration, in which the protesters also called for a democratic transition in the country.
Since mid-February 2011, thousands of pro-democracy protesters have held numerous demonstrations in the streets of Bahrain, calling for the Al Khalifa royal family to relinquish power.
On March 14, 2011, troops from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates invaded the country to assist the Bahraini government in its crackdown on peaceful protesters.
According to local sources, scores of people have been killed and hundreds arrested.
Physicians for Human Rights says doctors and nurses have been detained, tortured, or disappeared because they have “evidence of atrocities committed by the authorities, security forces, and riot police” in the crackdown on anti-government protesters.
Protesters say they will continue to hold anti-regime demonstrations until their demand for the establishment of a democratically elected government and an end to rights violations are met.