Thursday night (18 January 1996): At around 20.00 (17.00 GMT) clashes erupted simultaneously in all traditional uprising-areas of Bahrain. From Bani- Jamra and Duraz in the north-west of Bahrain to Sanbis (west of the capital Manama); from Qurrayya to the south-west village of Shahrakkan, from Dair to Samahij and Arad (in Muharraq), from Nuweidrat to Sitra, and in Hamad Town, people marched on the streets protesting against the attacks of security forces on mosques and detention of leading opposition figures. Clashes surfaced in Hamad Town (near Roundabout No. 7) for the first time in the history of the uprising.
The security forces encircled the house of Sheikh Abdul Amir Al-Jamri and detained him at 4.00 pm local time. He was set free two hours later. This is the third time Sheikh Al-Jamri is summoned or detained since last Saturday. Last Sunday, the leading opposition figure Mr. Abdul Wahab Hussain was arrested.
Yesterday (17 January) the Associated Press reported from Bahrain that (Hundreds of guests were evacuated from the Royal Meridien Hotel on Wednesday after a small bomb exploded in a toilet on the ground floor. A man who did not identify himself telephoned The Associated Press and said: "We put two bombs in the Meridien Hotel. Tell the government we can reach wherever we want to reach." The second bomb was discovered near the first one and defused, a security source said. No one was injured in the blast at the hotel, where an international oil conference had opened earlier in the day. The source, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the bomb blew a hole in the ceiling and a door)). A spokesman for the Bahrain Freedom Movement said "this is sad because it confirms worries of the opposition that the vicious cycle of violence incited by the security forces would have such consequences".
Unfortunately, leading members of the government are not showing any sign of rationality. The heir apparent was quoted by local press today saying "defence forces renew pledge to defend the country". It was the heir apparent himself who deployed the army over a month ago and had to retrieve the units after complaints by influential political circles.
Referring to the main political demand (restoration of 1975 parliament), the information minister was quoted yesterday (17 January) by Reuters saying "Once we feel that we need it, when it is suitable for our society and development". Such a statement reflects the backwardness of the governing establishment that admits it is still behind the advances made by the people of Bahrain in creating a modern society.
Bahrain Freedom Movement
18 January 1996
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