For Second Day in Row: Protests and Clashes in Bahrain Rejecting Normalization with Israel

2021-10-04 - 4:33 p

Bahrain Mirror (Exclusive): Despite fear and intimidation that the Bahraini authorities have worked hard to bolster in the past years in the country, the streets of Bahrain were full of angry protests on Friday, October 1, 2021, denouncing the visit of the Israeli Foreign Minister, Yair Lapid, to Manama, in the first public official visit by an Israeli minister since the announcement of the normalization of relations agreement between Tel Aviv and Manama a year ago.

For the second day, angry popular demonstrations continued as Lapid arrived in Manama. From the heart of the Bahraini capital, Manama, demonstrators expressed their rejection of all steps of normalization by the Bahraini regime with the Zionist entity, and affirmed their support for the Palestinians in the face of the occupation.

Angry protests, demonstrations and clashes were witnessed in Manama, Al-Qidam, Al-Dair, Abu Saiba, Sitra and many areas across the country. Security forces, in turn, fired toxic tear gas at protesters in Sitra to force them to disperse and back down. 

The Bahrain Forum for Human Rights said security authorities suppressed a peaceful demonstration in Sitra, in an explicit violation of freedom of peaceful assembly.

In other forms of expressing complete rejection of normalization, demonstrators burned the Zionist flag. Meanwhile, another flag was put on the ground to be stepped on.

Eyewitnesses said that clashes erupted between Bahrainis rejecting their government's behavior, while no injuries were reported.

Photos of the demonstrations showed scenes of tires burning and blocked roads, with posters reading slogans denouncing Lapid's visit. 

The participants chanted slogans rejecting normalization and describing the authorities' action as "treason" and "abandoning the Palestinian cause".

A number of activists shared their thoughts on social media under the hashtag "Bahrain rejects Zionists," protesting the minister's presence and the opening of the embassy.

Bahrainis agreed on the fact that they reject normalization with Israel. They condemned the Bahraini regime's steps saying that the visit of the Israeli foreign minister is not welcomed, and they reject calls for normalization with this usurping entity.

Bahrain's opposition Al-Wefaq Islamic National Society said it rejects the Israeli foreign minister's visit to Bahrain, calling the visit "a provocation to the sentiments of Bahrainis and a desperate attempt to break their word and will, also infringing on the right of the people to their fateful and principled issues."

Senior Shiite clerics inside Bahrain expressed their rejection of normalization. More than 240 Shiite religious scholars issued a statement denouncing establishing relations with the occupying entity.

The Bahraini National Initiative against Normalization expressed its "total rejection of normalization with this usurping entity."

On Thursday, the Zionist minister officially opened the entity's embassy in Manama, in the presence of his counterpart Abdulatif Al-Zayani and foreign ministry officials. 

Lapid said in a tweet: "We cut the tape and officially opened the Israeli embassy in Bahrain in the presence of its Foreign Minister Abdulatif Al-Zayani."

Bahrain signed an agreement with the Zionist entity last year to normalize relations between the two countries.

Palestinians denounced the agreements signed between Arab states and Israel, saying that they had abandoned the unified Arab position not to establish peace with Israel, unless it returned the occupied territories.

Arabic Version