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GROWING CONCERN: People at a protest rally organised by Shia Muslims in Mumbai against the "oppressive regimes" in Bahrain and Yemen and their use of violence against civilians.
MUMBAI: Hundreds of people protested against the brutal attacks on civilians in Bahrain, Yemen and other West Asian countries on the Azad Maidan here on Friday demanding civil rights and democracy to the people there. The protesters included Bahraini students studying in India. They demanded immediate international intervention to stop violence against civilians.
“The army is attacking peaceful protesters with guns. It has been 40 days since the protests began in those countries, but the international community is not paying as much attention there. The regime has closed down hospitals, stopped medical aid. My cousin was killed by the army just as he came out of the house in Bahrain,” Kasim Mohammad Abdullah, a Bahraini student studying in the Pune University, told The Hindu.
“We can't move out”
“Most of us have our final exams in four days, so we can't move out of here. Our family members are there. We have come to participate in the protest here to support our people fighting for democracy and civil rights there,” Abdul Aziz, another Bahraini student, said.
“The protests have grown so much that now the Bahrain government has brought in army from Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates to crush the peaceful protests. Quwait's government sends medical aid for the protesters but the Bahraini government has not yet accepted it because they want to prove that nothing wrong is happening in that country, they are not killing, wounding civilians,” Hussain Al Jazire said.
“The royal family has been holding the power since the past 250 years. There is no peace, no freedom there,” he said, sad about the dismal future in store for them once they return after completing their education. “There is no free press there. You will not see in the media what is actually happening there today,” he said.
Khoja Shia Isnaashari Jamaat, the organisation behind the protest, issued a press release demanding that U.N. peace-keeping forces be sent soon to the violence-stricken west Asian countries. “We demand the immediate release of all innocent civilians who have been imprisoned arbitrarily, especially religious personalities and Opposition leaders.”
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