Bahraini MPs call Israel 'Zionist, criminal and usurper regime'

Bahraini MP Mamdouh Abbas al-Saleh speaking at the parliamentary session.

A video has gone viral on social media, showing Bahraini lawmakers express their rejection to Manama’s normalization with the Israeli regime, calling the Tel Aviv regime “Zionist, criminal and a usurper entity”.  

In a parliamentary session held on Thursday, MP Mamdouh Abbas al-Saleh criticized a Bahraini airline for providing flights to the occupied Palestinian territories with discounts that reach up to 25% at the time it is not a destination for the Bahraini people.

In his stance before the parliament, al-Saleh said the Israeli regime is a “Zionist entity”, which received objection from the parliament speaker.

In the video, al-Saleh says “I want to know why Gulf Air insists on operating the flights, which we as Bahrainis from all sects and backgrounds see as a failing flight line. I do not think there is one single Bahraini who travels to the usurper entity,” adding “it is a criminal entity”.

In response, and upon request by a foreign advisor who was present at the session, the parliament speaker Ahmad al-Mosallam told al-Saleh to cross out the words “Zionist usurper entity.”

The move infuriated other MPs attending the session including MP Zeinab Abdel Amir who said the description should in fact be registered in the session’s report.

“I heard the consultant who does not represent the Bahraini people telling you to cross out the word,” MP Abdel Amir said. The lawmaker rejected the interference of the consultant, which she said was “a foreign Arab consultant. 

 “We discuss Bahrain and its issues in this parliament at the time our consultants are not Bahraini nationals and do not represent us! This is not acceptable”, she noted. 

Bahrain was one of the Persian Gulf regional states that normalized its relations with the Israeli regime via the Washington-mediated so-called “Abraham Accords in September 2020.

Ever since, the tiny Persian Gulf island has been witnessing near-daily popular protests against the deals, whose opponents say opens up the way for the Israeli regime’s interference in the Persian Gulf region.

However, many analysts point out that a majority of the Bahraini people reject normalization with the Israeli apartheid regime.  

Bahrainis have repeatedly expressed opposition to the normalization of relations with the Israeli regime, by holding rallies to show solidarity with the Palestinians and condemn normalization of relations with the Tel Aviv regime.

This is emphasized by political activist and commentator Paul Larudee, who said in a Press TV interview last year that a large majority of the Bahraini people reject the so-called normalization with the Israeli regime, however, there is immense influence and pressure by the US, Britain and Saudi Arabia on the Bahraini regime.

In more recent evidence to Bahraini people’s stance on the Israeli regime, a January 2023 poll conducted by the Arab Center for Research and Policy Studies (ACRPS) indicated that 84% of the Arab people, including Bahrainis disapprove any recognition of Israel by their home countries.

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