(Ahlul Bayt News Agency) -It started after an Irish University established that the gases used by police against Bahraini demonstrators were ten times the acceptable international level of concentration. To mark the second anniversary of the February 14 Bahraini uprising, Prof Damian McCormack, Prof David Grayson and Tara O'Grady call for a ban on CS gas, 2-chlorobenzylidene malononitrile.
Also, Avaaz, the online campaign group has launched a petition calling on two companies who had supplied the Alkhalifa with these lethal gases to stop the process.
Experts say that Bahrain is using a poisonous form of tear gas against civilians that Bahrain wouldn’t even be permitted to use in a war against armed soldiers! Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) report that in 100 years of tear gas being used against civilians, no country has ever abused it like Bahrain. Police “routinely violated every UN principle governing police use of force.” There is no excuse for using this brutality which claimed victims from a boy as young as 8 to an elderly man of 88. Activists are taking their campaign to Europe and America in order to achieve the required ban on the use of lethal gases and shotguns. More than 100 people have died as a direct result of the use of those two weapons.
A big controversy is flaring up after a controversial decision to rename a Royal Military Academy (RMA) sports hall. The decision has come under attack from politicians but has been defended by Army officers. Mons Hall, a top quality sports hall at the RMA in Sandhurst and home to the British modern pentathlon team, is said to be named after The Battle of Mons, where thousands of British and German soldiers died in 1914. However, Lieutenant Colonel Roy Parkinson from the RMA said: "Mons Hall was actually named after Mons Officer Cadet School in Aldershot. Bahrain’s dictator, Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa who has been plundering Bahrain’s wealth had given £3 million. “To change the name of something which commemorates a very tragic episode in British military history, simply because they’re getting a sum of money from a rather dubious source, is appalling,” said Labour MP Andy Slaughter.
Meanwhile jailed doctors have called for 17th February to be named “Day to Defend Medical Neutrality”. They issued a statement signed by: Dr Saeed Al Samaheeji, Dr Ali Al Ekri and senior nurse, Ibrahim Al Demstani. The statement said that in proposing this we “remember the violations against the medics when the Revolution was launched on this day in 2011; the banning of the medics from attending the injured that led to cases of death that could have been prevented”. Also 65 prisoners staged a five day hunger strike to mark the second anniversary of the 14th February Revolution.
There is also grave concern for the life of Mahmood Isa, of Nabih Saleh island, who had been shot on 14th February at close range, smashing his skull. He is still in the danger zone. Also Hassan Jassim who was shot on that day, is suffering blood haemorrhage resulting from a direct hit to the head. Many others are suffering away from hospitals which are still under military control.
On Wednesday 21st February, The Independent newspaper published a report about the rifts within the Alkahlifa clique. It said: “In a highly unusual step, members of the Royal Family are now beginning to speak out against their rivals – the first clear admission that the family has indeed become divided. In an anonymous interview with the Wall Street Journal newspaper this week, a “senior royal” hit out at his cousins bemoaning the fact that “surrounding the king are all powerful Khawalids”. It further added: “Khawalid is a term used in Bahrain to describe an ultraconservative faction within the Royal Family who trace their lineage back to Khaled bin Ali al-Khalifa, who in the 1920s was the powerful younger brother of the then Emir. He led a brutal crackdown against a Shi’a uprising and was imprisoned by the British. His supporters were known for their intense dislike of the island’s majority Shi’a population and spent much of the late twentieth century outside the corridors of power. But key Khawalid figures have managed to get into senior positions within the Royal Family and in recent years appear to have sidelined figures who are more sympathetic to economic and political reform such as the Crown Prince Salman bin Hamed al-Khalifa. “
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