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Thu 17 Mar 2011 12:02 PM

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Emirates, Gulf Air cancel flights as Bahrain violence escalates

Dubai airline suspends flights as Bahrain declares martial law in crackdown on protesters

Emirates, Gulf Air cancel flights as Bahrain violence escalates
Emirates has suspended flights to Bahrain in light of the ongoing unrest

Emirates Airline, Dubai’s flag carrier, has cancelled flights to Bahrain as the Gulf state declared martial law to quell nearly a month of sectarian unrest.

The airline has suspended flights EK835 and EK836 to Bahrain from March 19 to March 23, comprising four weekly services.

“We continue to monitor the situation closely,” an Emirates spokesperson said in a statement.

Bahrain’s state-owned carrier Gulf Air on Thursday said it had cancelled all flights to and from Iran and Iraq and had temporarily shut sales offices in Manama.

The carrier plans to resume flights to Iran on March 21 and to Iraq on March 18, it said in a statement posted on its website.

Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways said all flights to Bahrain
were operating normally.

Saudi and other Gulf troops entered Bahrain on Monday amid fears the uprising that began last month could play into the hands of non-Arab Shi'ite power Iran.

Security forces used tanks and helicopters Wednesday to drive protesters off the streets and clear a makeshift camp at the capital’s Pearl Roundabout.

Three protesters and three police died in the crackdown.

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Becky M 9 years ago

Demonstrators in Bahrain are asking for freedom, justice and equality, and have nothing to do with religious or sectarian revolution.

Democracy is not something the Saudis and Emiratis like to hear unfortunately. A whole army has been sent in to quiet the unarmed peaceful demonstrators and the media machine has been mobilised to make these peaceful demonstrators look like iranian backed religious savages.

And as usual the US, UK, and Europe stand by watching while a slow-motion genocide is carried out in Bahrain.

Mariam NK 9 years ago

As a liberal Bahraini who lived here my entire life, I would like to shed some light on the events in Bahrain. The opposition is spearheaded by Hassan Mushaima, Said Shehabi, Ebrahim Sharif, and Ali Salman of AlWefaq which had 18 members in the 40 member elected parliament. Since Feb. 14, they gave speeches at Lulu glorifying martyrdom with phrases like "we want blood" and "let there be among you who falls as a martyr". "Death to AlKhalifa" has become commonly chanted and spray painted. They protested in ministries, schools and hospitals. They vandalized neighborhoods of "nationalized" Bahrainis. They abducted and beat up 15 Indian/Pakistani workers leaving 2 dead. They deliberately ran over and killed a total of 4 police men. They blocked access to the central business district, holding an entire nation hostage. During the past month, the opposition has declined many invitations for dialogue, while their martyrs are used as human shields. All of this under the "peaceful" banner.

Sid 9 years ago

Did you say 'unarmed'...

They're form of 'peaceful demonstrations' include knives, guns, swords, poles, pipes and brute force.

This is NOT a situation of standing up against an oppresive regime (Libya/Egypt). These 'peaceful demonstraters' are killing innocent people (expats) and policemen/soldiers and terrorizing neighborhoods to prove their points.

They had even taken over a large govt. hospital and certain doctors and nurses REFUSED treatment to those who are not from the 'peaceful' side before the military took over, just recently. WHO does that??

These ppl have manipulated the media and at the same time, it seems that the media jst interviews 2-3 ppl from ONE side and makes a story. Its biased and absolutely wrong.

If you're willing - I suggest you take a look at the bigger picture through Youtube/Facebook and find out the REAL deal BEFORE making assumptions on freedom, democracy and other jargon you think the government is denying them..

shawn 9 years ago

seeing is believing, just watch Youtube videos of Bahrain to see who is armed and who is not.

John 9 years ago

Becky you have no idea what is going on here there are dark forces at work under the guise of peaceful demonstrations, the genuine demonstrators are themselves being duped by the hidden agenda, kidnappings guns beatings even in the hospital. I like most westerners agree with peacefull protest but this is far from that.
This is a push for a bigger prize and thankfully the perpetrators across the gulf in Iran have bigger problems in their own cities at the moment t take full advantage.
The Western Media sorry to say have been totaly biased in their reporting both Sky and the BBC have got it wrong jumping on the sensationalism theme instead of the facts they too have a lot to answer for.
Hopefully and Inshalla as the Arabs say both the truth and justice will come out of this sad event.

Mirza 9 years ago

I totally agree with Sid and Mariam. Innocent expats (soft targets) are being savagely attacked by groups of anti-government protestors. I am not a political person but only want the facts to be known to the world.

gordon 9 years ago

Becky that is a little niave.

Take a plane trip from Iran to bahrain and it is full of clerics returning from a bi annual trip to Iran for training.

Look at the posters the demonstrators are holding, depicting clerics from Iran.

So it is a touch more complicated than just claiming they want democracy