5 Hours on Diraz Raid, Regime Forces Attack Inside Yard of Sheikh Qassims House, Arrest Protesters

2017-05-23 - 8:45 p

Bahrain Mirror - Exclusive: The Bahraini regime's heavily armed security forces attacked (Tuesday May 23, 2017) the inside yard of the country's Shiite majority leader, Ayatollah Sheikh Isa Qassim, and arrested protesters there. This comes 5 hours after forces raided Diraz, as part of a broad security operation targeting protesters outside Sheikh Qassim's house.

Special security forces carried assault weapons and took part in the operation, while masked civilian forces, believed to be affiliated to the National Security Apparatus, were deployed near Ayatollah Qassim's house.

The operation resulted in the martyrdom of Bahraini citizen Mohammad Kadhem Zainuldine, and injury of dozens of peaceful protests.

Based on photos circulated by activists, crowds gathered in the sit-in site outside Sheikh Qassim's house this morning, as security forces advanced inside the village to disperse them. After a short while, security forces were seen arriving at the sit-in site, walking around. While there were no accurate information about what happened while dispersing protesters, photos by activists showed that only 3 ambulances were sent to the area.

Sheikh Isa Qassim's house was since then besieged, while security troops raided many houses in search for protesters.

Moreover, forces removed all signs of protest using a bulldozer, and photos showed convoys of military vehicles from different apparatuses deployed in Diraz.

In a statement, the Ministry of Interior said that the security deployment in Diraz "continue to remove violations and secure the area to restore normalcy". It also claimed that the security operation in Diraz led to the arrest of a number of fugitives who used Diraz as hideout.

The Bahraini Ministry of Interior avoided referring to the martyr killed, in addition to the dozens of protesters injured, as a result of the vast security operation and attack on protesters.

Protesters broadcasted photos for protesters who took to the streets in shrouds as a symbol of their readiness to sacrifice themselves for the sake of their religious authority. Another photo showed a protesters wearing his shroud and reading Quran as military vehicles advanced into the village.

Protests took to streets of other Bahraini areas close to Diraz, while a MoI helicopter was seen to attack protesters in Bani Jamra.

Bahrainis from different areas tried to reach Diraz walking after regime forces raided it.

Information reported later that the internet network in Diraz was intercepted, causing a delay in information and photo updates on what's happening.

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