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Wed Jan 2, 2013 3:35AM
A Bahraini woman walks with her child during a protest in a suburb of Manama on January 1, 2013.

A Bahraini woman walks with her child during a protest in a suburb of Manama on January 1, 2013.

Bahrainis have staged a fresh anti-regime demonstration despite the ongoing heavy-handed crackdown on peaceful pro-democracy protesters in the Persian Gulf country. On Tuesday, people gathered at a park in a suburb of the capital Manama and chanted slogans against the ruling Al Khalifa royal family, AFP reported. Bahrainis held demonstrations in several towns and villages across the country on Monday, calling for the realization of democracy and freedom. Clashes broke out in many areas after Bahraini forces fired teargas canisters and birdshot to disperse the protesters, who called for the release of all jailed activists and demanded that King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa step down. The Bahraini revolution began in mid-February 2011, when the people, inspired by the popular revolutions that toppled the dictators of Tunisia and Egypt, started holding massive demonstrations. The Bahraini government promptly launched a brutal crackdown on the peaceful protests and called in Saudi-led Arab forces from neighboring states. Dozens of people have been killed in the crackdown, and the security forces have arrested hundreds, including doctors and nurses accused of treating injured revolutionaries. A report published by the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry in November 2011 found that the Al Khalifa regime had used excessive force in the crackdown and accused Manama of torturing political activists, politicians, and protesters. The protesters say they will continue holding anti-regime demonstrations until their demand for the establishment of a democratically elected government is met. MP/MHB
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