Bahrain Intensifies Security on Opposition Leader Trial Day
Story Code : 589189
Local media and eye witnesses reported that security measures and identity checks were exceptionally increased in Diraz where Sheikh Isa Qassim lives.
Bahraini court assigned by trying the leader was supposed to hold a session on Sunday though reports said the trial was adjourned till January.
The intensified security checks caused long traffics in the villages causing a public annoyance especially when foreign workers were not allowed to enter the village. Workers and shop owners were told to acquire special entry passes for the day.
Manama had also assigned a police helicopter to petrol over the house of Sheikh Isa Qassim who has refused to participate in the court, protesting its legality.
A couple of days ago, photos surfaced of security forces firing tear gas canisters into the neighborhoods of Diraz during the late hours of the night with no known reasons. An Activist said that police have been on alert along the perimeter and exits of the village since yesterday, adding that they provoked the residents heading to their homes.
Manama trying Sheikh Qassim over charges of "money laundering" related to the Shiite religious obligation of Khums (alms) in a case raised by the government against him after it revoked his citizenship last June.
Since Sheikh Isa Qassim's nationality was revoked, thousands of citizens have been protesting in an open-ended rally outside his home in Diraz. Since then, security authorities also imposed a siege on the village and repeatedly cut off communications. The rally is still being held to date.