Thousands mourn at funeral in Bahrain

Written by  Published by:Shiite News
Published in Middle East
Monday, 21 March 2011


behrinThousands of Bahrainis have attended the funeral procession of an anti-government protester killed during last week's government crackdown in Sitra. Issa Radhi went missing last Wednesday during an attack by government forces in Sitra, southwest of the capital, Manama, his family said
Radhi's body was returned to his family on Sunday, with a broken skull, shotgun wounds to his legs and covered in multiple bruises, said his brother Khalil Radhi. "We bury him today, but we won't bury the right to avenge his death," Khalil said.

The government authorities did not give any explanation, and only said that they had found his body. More than 2,000 mourners chanting "Down with the regime" joined the third funeral procession on Sunday.

The 47-year-old Radhi was not the only one who went missing during the protests, according to a former opposition lawmaker. At least 100 people have gone missing, said Hadi al-Mussawi, from the largest Shia opposition group, Wefaq. Sitra, the hub of Bahrain's oil industry, has been the site of the worst confrontations during the month-long anti-government protests, in which at least 13 people have been killed.

Saudi Arabia has deployed more than 1,000 troops to the country, while the UAE has dispatched around 500 police forces to assist in the repression of protesters.

Bahrain opposition reject talks offer

Bahrain's main opposition groups, led by Al Wefaq party, have rejected King Hamad's offer of talks, saying the government should comply with the protesters' demands.

The groups said on Sunday they would not negotiate with the government until all the troops are pulled off the streets, the prisoners are freed and the government guarantees political reforms.

The conditions set for talks last month, included the creation of a government not dominated by members of the Sunni royal family and the establishment of an elected council to redraft the constitution.

"Bahrain needs a new agreement between the people and the government... This system is broken and failed. We need a new system and a new constitution," Wefaq leader Sheikh Ali Salman told a news conference.

"Today we say to the government you took the wrong decision when you let the army come into the streets... We tried our best to solve our problems inside Bahrain. We don't want big problems in this small country," he added.

Protesters have been violently suppressed by Bahraini security forces aided by over 1,000 Saudi troops and 500 United Arab Emirates police. At least 13 people have been killed and over 1,000 injured in the crackdown.

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Radhi's body was returned to his family on Sunday, with a broken skull, shotgun wounds to his legs and covered in multiple bruises, said his brother Khalil Radhi. "We bury him today, but we won't bury the right to avenge his death," Khalil said.

The government authorities did not give any explanation, and only said that they had found his body. More than 2,000 mourners chanting "Down with the regime" joined the third funeral procession on Sunday.

The 47-year-old Radhi was not the only one who went missing during the protests, according to a former opposition lawmaker. At least 100 people have gone missing, said Hadi al-Mussawi, from the largest Shia opposition group, Wefaq. Sitra, the hub of Bahrain's oil industry, has been the site of the worst confrontations during the month-long anti-government protests, in which at least 13 people have been killed.

Saudi Arabia has deployed more than 1,000 troops to the country, while the UAE has dispatched around 500 police forces to assist in the repression of protesters.

Bahrain opposition reject talks offer

Bahrain's main opposition groups, led by Al Wefaq party, have rejected King Hamad's offer of talks, saying the government should comply with the protesters' demands.

The groups said on Sunday they would not negotiate with the government until all the troops are pulled off the streets, the prisoners are freed and the government guarantees political reforms.

The conditions set for talks last month, included the creation of a government not dominated by members of the Sunni royal family and the establishment of an elected council to redraft the constitution.

"Bahrain needs a new agreement between the people and the government... This system is broken and failed. We need a new system and a new constitution," Wefaq leader Sheikh Ali Salman told a news conference.

"Today we say to the government you took the wrong decision when you let the army come into the streets... We tried our best to solve our problems inside Bahrain. We don't want big problems in this small country," he added.

Protesters have been violently suppressed by Bahraini security forces aided by over 1,000 Saudi troops and 500 United Arab Emirates police. At least 13 people have been killed and over 1,000 injured in the crackdown.

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