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Bahrainis protest arbitrary detentions, demand political prisoners’ release

File photo shows a nighttime rally in support of political prisoners near the Bahraini capital Manama.

Bahraini people have once again staged demonstrations across the tiny Persian Gulf kingdom to condemn the detention of political activists by the ruling Al Khalifah regime.

The al-Wefaq National Islamic Society, Bahrain’s main opposition group, said the residents of Sanabis, a town which lies in the suburbs of the capital Manama, held a peaceful protest late on Tuesday to condemn the regime’s attacks and arbitrary detentions, and to express solidarity with political prisoners.

Al-Wefaq also said in a post on its Twitter account that the residents of the town of Demestan had staged a rally in solidarity with imprisoned political activists.

Holding placards that read, "We will not leave the streets until our demands are met," the protesters called for the release of political prisoners.

“Residents of the area continue their peaceful protests in solidarity with prisoners of conscience and to demand their unconditional release,” the opposition group said in the tweet.

The town of Sanabis was the scene of protests a day earlier for the imprisonment of human rights activist Abduljalil Abdulla al-Singace, who has been on hunger strike for more than 140 days.

The protesters in Bahrain have repeatedly voiced concerns over the alarming situation of the country’s prisons and condemned Bahraini authorities’ mistreatment of imprisoned activists, demanding the immediate release of all political inmates.

Bahrain has come under pressure from human rights organizations over its prison conditions, including overcrowding, poor sanitation, and lack of medical care.

Back in April, Bahrain’s most prominent cleric Ayatollah Sheikh Isa Qassim said drawing up a new constitution was the only way out of the political crisis in the protest-hit tiny kingdom, urging the regime in Manama to pursue an agreement with the Bahraini opposition instead of increasingly suppressing dissent.

Demonstrations have been held in Bahrain on a regular basis ever since a popular uprising began in mid-February 2011. 

The participants demand that the Al Khalifah regime relinquish power and allow a just system representing all Bahrainis to be established.

Manama, however, has gone to great lengths to clamp down on any sign of dissent.

On March 5, 2017, Bahrain’s parliament approved the trial of civilians at military tribunals in a measure blasted by human rights campaigners as being tantamount to the imposition of an undeclared martial law countrywide.

King Hamad ratified the constitutional amendment on April 3, 2017.                           

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