Al-Khalifa regime threatened people to vote in elections: Bahraini cleric

TEHRAN, Nov. 26 (MNA) – The Director of Bahrainis Seminary in Iranian holy city of Qom Sheikh Abdullah al-Daghagh condemned the recent elections in Bahrain as a farce, saying that the Al-Khalifa regime had threatened the people to vote.

Sheikh Abdullah Al-Daghagh, who previously served as the representative of prominent cleric Sheikh Isa Qassim in Iran,  told Mehr News Agency (MNA) correspondent that the Saturday’s parliamentary elections in Bahrain was a ‘farce’ as the Al-Khalifa regime had threatened the people to turn out to vote otherwise they would face big problems living in the country.

He said that the people of Bahrain boycotted the polls because the situation in Bahrain had got worse than ever, adding that the elections would not be real unless the Bahraini authorities reached a real agreement with the people.

“The opposition groups boycotted the elections with the hope of a reaching rule of law and a national reconciliation. But the ruling system seeks to establish a parliament through which they can implement their plans and programs and carry out all of their actions in the name of the Bahraini people,” he said, stressing “the Bahraini opposition and the people of this country will never accept this.”

With the regard to human rights situation in his country, Sheikh Abdullah al-Daghagh said “the prisoners in Bahrain are in a terrible condition. Al-Khalifa regime's forces are escalating crackdown on the people.... A former Bahraini MP who had asked a question on boycotting the elections in a tweet on his Twitter account is in jail now. Everyone in the country who speaks out against injustice is put behind bars.”

The Bahraini cleric said that some parts of the society turned out to vote in the elections because they were under immense pressures from the authorities.

With regard to the silence of the international community against the Al-Khalifa regime’s actions, he said that the international community with the United States at the top are supporting the Saudi kingdom and Al-Khalifa regime and their call for respecting human rights is just words and no actions as they only care about their own interests.

He said that Al-Khalifa regime is the Western countries’ strategic ally and they will not cut their support for it unless their interests requires them to do so.

With respect to attempts by Arab countries, especially Bahrain to normalize relations with Israel, al-Daghagh said “we condemn the process of normalizing relations and the so-called the Deal of the Century…Palestine is our number-one issue. Any country seeking to normalize relations with Israel is a traitor because Israel is an illegitimate government and a cancerous tumor that colonists created in the Arab world…. Anyone who participates in this process will be thrown into the dustbin of history.”

He touched upon Iran's role in supporting the resistance movement, saying “Iran deos a lot in support of religious and press freedom. It tries to send the message of our oppressed people to the world, and this is done through television networks and media programs.”

MNA/4467515

News Code 139933

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