Bahrain mourner killed in funeral march clash
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Last Updated: Tuesday, February 15, 2011, 15:29
Dubai: Security forces in Bahrain fired tear gas and bird shot Tuesday on mourners gathered for a funeral procession for a man killed in the first Egypt-inspired protests to reach the Gulf, killing at least one other person and sharply raising the chances for further unrest.

Officials at Bahrain's Salmaniya Medical Complex, the meeting point for thousands of mourners, said a 31-year-old man died from injuries from bird shot fired during the melee in the hospital's parking lot.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not allowed to speak to journalists.

The latest death raises the possibility of more rallies and challenges to the ruling Sunni monarchy in Bahrain, a strategic Western ally and home to the US Navy's 5th Fleet.

After the clash, riot police eventually withdrew and allowed the funeral cortege for 21-year-old Ali Abdulhadi Mushaima to proceed from the hospital, the main state-run medical facility in Bahrain's capital Manama.

Mushaima was killed yesterday during clashes with security forces trying to halt marches to demand greater freedoms and political rights. At least 25 people were injured in the barrage of rubber bullets, bird shot and tear gas, family members said.

A statement from Bahrain's interior minister, Lt Gen Rashid bin Abdulla Al Khalifa, expressed "sincere condolences and deep sympathy" to Mushaima's family.

He stressed that the death will be investigated and charges would be filed if authorities determined excessive force was used against the protesters.

But that's unlikely to appease the protesters, whose "day of rage" coincided with major anti-government demonstrations in Iran and Yemen.

In the past week, Bahrain's rulers have attempted to undermine calls for reform by promising nearly USD 2,700 for each family and pledging to loosen state controls on the media.


First Published: Tuesday, February 15, 2011, 15:29

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