JNN 5 Feb 2013 Manama : Thousands of Bahraini demonstrators have staged anti-regime protest rallies near the capital, Manama, marking two years since the start of an uprising against the ruling Al Khalifa family.
The protesters shouted slogans against the Al Khalifa regime and called on Bahraini Prime Minister Khalifa bin Salman Al-Khalifa to step down.
They accuse Khalifa of directing the crackdown on opposition activists and several other human rights violations.
The demonstrators have also called for the immediate release of political prisoners and have threatened to continue their protests until their demands are met.
Bahrainis have been staging demonstrations since mid-February 2011, demanding political reform and a constitutional monarchy, a demand that later changed to an outright call for the ouster of the ruling Al Khalifa family following its crackdown on popular protests.
On January 30, Bahraini regime forces brutally dispersed protesters gathered in the northern village of Daih, west of Manama, to mourn the death of a Bahraini child during a similar protest.
The eight-year-old Qasim Habib died due to inhalation of poisonous tear gas fired by regime forces during a demonstration in Karbabad village on January 26.
Last year, Amnesty International warned about the Bahraini regime’s misuse of tear gas against protesters and called for an investigation into the tear gas-related deaths.
The Manama regime has arrested many rights activists, doctors and nurses since the uprising began.
Bahrainis say they will continue holding anti-regime demonstrations until their demand for the establishment of a democratically elected government and an end to rights violations is met.