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Bahrain Police Crack Down On Democracy Anniversary Protest


 A protester runs through a cloud of tear-gas fired by riot police during a protest in the village of Sitra south of Manama last month

A protester runs through a cloud of tear-gas fired by riot police during a protest in the village of Sitra south of Manama last month

Police in Bahrain have been taking action to disperse demonstrators attempting to mark the one-year anniversary of pro-reform protests in the Persian Gulf kingdom.

Protesters made several attempts on February 14 to march to Pearl Square in the capital Manama -- the center of last year's majority Shi'ite-led protests against the kingdom's Sunni Muslim rulers -- but were blocked by security forces.

This crackdown followed violent clashes on February 13 in which police fired tear gas and stun grenades at protesters.

Inspired by the Arab Spring uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt, protesters, beginning on February 14, 2011, camped for a month at the site, before being forcibly driven out by security personnel.

Most of the protesters are members of Bahrain's Shi'ite Muslim majority who are opposed to what they see as oppressive rule by the ruling Sunni regime.

Compiled from agency reports

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