Thursday, March 3, 2011

Opposition Demands

Al-Jazeera is reporting that six opposition parties -- they didn't say but this must be al-Wifaq, al-Haqq, Wa'ad, Islamic Action Society, al-Wifa' al-Islami, and maybe the Progressive Action Society? -- have officially announced their political demands in a press conference. For extra effect, the announcement was evidently made by Ebrahim Sharif, the Sunni head of the leftist Wa'ad Society. So that should bring the percent of Sunnis in the opposition to at least 0.5%.

The conditions, which are being described by Sh. 'Ali Salman as pre-conditions for dialogue (however that works), are:

1. Release of political prisoners and guarantee the safety and security of protesters at the Pearl Roundabout through the negotiation process;

2. Creation of a new independent commission to investigate the deaths of protesters since Feb. 14;

3. Repeal of the 2002 Constitution and drafting of a new one that grants power to completely-elected legislative body;

4. A new, fully-elected government; and

5. A dialogue timeline of no longer than three weeks.

The Sunni parties, not impressed, responded with their own "National Unity Rally." Interesting name for it.

Update: even less impressed were the Sunnis of Hamad Town, who evidently clashed today with Shi'a there in a hundreds-strong street fight broken up finally by police. Though fighting between naturalized Sunnis (i.e., Syria and Yemeni gangs) in Hamad Town is somewhat common, this is something different altogether. Especially given the reports that large numbers of Shi'a from nearby al-Malikiyyah, Karzakhan, Dumistan, etc. were headed to the scene to provide backup, this could easily get out of hand.

Another Update: As always, already there seems to be a video on YouTube.

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