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Bahrainis Demand Democratic Reforms, Express Solidarity with Sheikh Isa Qassim

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Local Editor

Hundreds of Bahrainis took to the streets to reiterate their calls for democratic reforms in the Gulf kingdom Thursday evening.

Bahraini protesters

Marching peacefully, protesters shouted slogans demanding the ouster of the Bahraini monarch Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa.

Many also held up posters of Bahrain's highest religious authority Sheikh Isa Qassim in a show of support for the ailing Shiite cleric who remains under house arrest.

Protests were reported in a number of urban centers including the capital Manama and the island of Sitra.

Bahrain is dominated by Shias but ruled by a minority Sunni family. Since the beginning of protests in March 2011, Shia clerics have reiterated their support for peaceful gatherings while condemning any form of violence.

The regime, however, has hardly tolerated any form of dissent while blaming the clerics, some of them seen as a source of emulation, for unrest.

The top Shia cleric in the island, Sheikh Isa Qassim, has been revoked of his citizenship rights while Sheikh Ali Salman, the most senior opposition leader, also a revered cleric, remains behind bars like many other activists.

Source: Lualua TV English, Edited by website team