Bahrain police fire tear gas on jailed activists on hunger strike

Bahrain police fired tear gas on jailed hunger strikers, who were protesting their sentences caused by last year’s Shiite-led uprising, the AFP reported.

The hunger strike was started on Sunday by 14 opposition figures, who said it was in honor of the Feb. 14 anniversary of the failed uprising. They were among 21 politicians, rights activists and bloggers who were tried in a military court on charges such as "forming a terrorist group to change the constitution and its monarchical system,” and organizing protests, Reuters reported.

Read more at GlobalPost: Bahrain police fire rubber bullets and tear gas at Shiite opposition offices

The riot police fired tear gas on the hunger strikers in one of the prison’s cells, according to the head of the Bahrain Youth Society for Human Rights (BYSHR), Mohammed al-Maskati, the AFP reported. He said there were no injuries from the incident, but one of the activists, Abdulhadi al-Khawaja, was hospitalized for low blood sugar levels.

According to the AFP, the interior ministry said the hunger strikers were being taken care of. "All prisoners are receiving full medical care and a team of medics is present 24 hours to provide treatment when needed," the ministry said in a statement carried by the official BNA news agency, the AFP reported. "No cases of illness have been registered due to the hunger strike.”

Read more at GlobalPost: Bahrain: 20 security forces charged with abuse of protesters

Over 150 people joined the 14 hunger strikers since Sunday, Maskati said, the BBC reported. Eight of the activists who started the strike are serving life sentences.

The prison sentences have been criticized by an independent commission of human rights exports, saying the military trials need to be reviewed, the BBC reported. Of those convicted, and leading the hunger strike, includes leading human rights activist Khawaja, Hassan Mushaimaa, secretary general of the Shiite-dominated Haq movement and Sunni opposition leader, Ibrahim Sharif, the BBC reported.

Read more at GlobalPost: Bahrain: Fresh protests as report charges government with excessive force


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