Shia protesters demand reforms in Bahrain

March 23, 2013 - 3:27:46 am

DUBAI: Thousands of Shias demonstrated in Bahrain yesterday to demand democratic reforms in the Gulf kingdom ruled by a Sunni dynasty, witnesses said.

“Khalifa! Step down,” chanted protesters, referring to Prime Minister Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa, who has been in office since 1971, they said.

The Shia-led opposition has repeatedly demanded the prime minister be elected.

“Bahrain is in need of a large political plan... that takes the country into a new stage based on the rule of the people, not the rule of one family,” opposition groups said in a statement following the protest in the village of Bilad Al Qadeem, southwest of Manama.