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Bahraini Regime Continues Religious Oppression Violations During Ashura Ceremonies

During the Ashura ceremonies in several Bahraini regions and towns, the Bahraini regime authorities continued their violations of religious oppression, targeting and restricting citizens from participating in Ashura processions.

According to Bahraini opposition sources, armed forces in civilian attire removed black mourning flags and banners in the regions of Al-Murkh, Salmaniya, Saar, Al-Ghurayfah, Barbar, Karzakan, Al-Malikiyah, Ishkan, and Hamad Town, as well as in the towns of Abu Saiba, Shakhura, and Sanabis.

Additionally, security forces, led by the executioner Turki Al-Majid, prevented the procession in Saar from taking place under the pretext of a banner displaying the image of Ayatollah Sheikh Isa Qassim, and they also photographed participants in the Al-Murkh procession to intimidate them.

In the town of Sanabis, the regime’s forces raided to remove Al-Ahrar newspaper, distributed on Ashura’s occasion. Meanwhile, security vehicles affiliated with the Ministry of Interior, along with other civilian vehicles carrying individuals in civilian attire, patrolled the streets surrounding the procession of Imam Al-Rida (Peace Be Upon Him), according to the Ra’sad Al-Mudahammat network.

The opposition Islamic Al-Wefaq Society affirmed, in a tweet on Twitter, that “the attacks on Ashura manifestations are part of the series of sectarian persecution against Shia citizens.”

Bahraini regime leader, Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, has openly attempted to whitewash religious oppression violations by claiming to ensure the success of the Ashura season.

During a meeting in Manama with some of his advisers and officials from his regime, Hamad bin Isa praised “the initiatives carried out by relevant authorities to ensure the success of the Ashura season by the specificity of Bahraini society.”

Hamad bin Isa promoted what he described as “the pillars of the unified Bahraini identity, adorned by coexistence, characterized by compassion, and bolstered by the cohesion of its social fabric.”

He went so far as to express appreciation for “the efforts of the Ministry of Interior and the statements of the heads of the mourning halls, which demonstrated awareness, responsibility, patriotism, and commitment to preserving the privacy of the Bahraini approach in commemorating Ashura.”

He also commended “all security and community services, the precision and smoothness of the organization, and the care and necessary follow-up to ensure that the rites are practised freely and systematically.”

Ashura is a significant religious event for the Shia community, commemorating the martyrdom of Imam Hussain, the grandson of the Prophet Muhammad, in the Battle of Karbala. The commemoration involves processions, mourning, and religious gatherings, and it holds immense cultural and spiritual importance for the Shia population.

The actions of the Bahraini regime in suppressing Ashura observances are seen as an infringement on religious freedom and have sparked concerns over the systematic targeting of the Shia community in Bahrain.

International human rights organizations have repeatedly criticized the regime for violating religious and civil liberties.

As the situation unfolds, human rights advocates and the international community continue to closely monitor and condemn Bahrain’s ongoing religious persecution and violation of basic human rights.

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