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Fri Sep 21, 2012 4:18PM
Bahraini troops (file photo)

Bahraini troops (file photo)

Saudi-backed Bahraini forces have attacked anti-regime protesters demanding an end to the rule of Al Khalifa family in the capital, Manama, firing tear gas at peaceful demonstrators. Witnesses say regime forces also used rubber bullets to break up the rally on Friday. There were no immediate reports of casualties. Bahrainis hold almost daily anti-regime rallies to demand the release of political prisoners and an end to rights violations by Manama. On Wednesday, the acting president of Bahrain Center for Human Rights said that the violation of human rights remains widespread in the country and called for real change. "Use of excessive force is still a tool for suppressing daily protests, with unprecedented use of tear gas during protests and inside residential areas," Maryam al-Khawaja said on the sidelines of a meeting of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva. Bahrain, which is home to the US Navy’s Fifth Fleet, has been the scene of anti-regime protests since February 2011 and scores of people have been killed and hundreds more injured in the regime crackdown. Many others, including opposition leaders and human rights activists, were also given long jail terms as part of the crackdown. A report published by the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry in November 2011 said regime forces "resorted to the use of unnecessary and excessive force, terror-inspiring behavior and unnecessary damage to property," during popular protests in the country. Bahraini protesters hold King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa responsible for the death of the demonstrators during the uprising. HM/JR/SS
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