Press Shia Agency – Bahraini police forces have fired tear gas at supporters of prominent Shi’ah cleric, Shaykh Isa Qasim, around his residence in the western Diraz region in a bid to disperse the crowd and break into the cleric’s house.

Press Shia Agency – Jalal Fayruz, former Bahraini legislator from London, said that the Bahraini regime tries to put pressure on Shaykh Isa Qasim, because Al Khalifah is afraid of the cleric’s important position among the Bahraini people.

The Al Khalifah regime feels being threatened by the influence of the top cleric, “because Shaykh Isa Qasim is a spiritual leader for the Bahrainis – at least for 70 percent or more of the Bahrainis,” Fayruz said on Wednesday, December 21.

According to the former lawmaker, “He (Shaykh Qasim) has been standing very strongly against atrocities and violations [by the regime], asking for democracy and dignity for the Bahraini people. That’s why the regime considers him as a threat.”

The regime has revoked the prominent cleric’s citizenship. Shaykh Qasim “has been put on trial” and for that reason the Bahraini people have gathered around his residence and staged a 24/7 sit-in to protect the Bahraini spiritual leader.

The Wednesday raid by armed forces has left at least “three people injured severely” and other supporters have suffered suffocation, Fayruz added.

Thousands of Bahraini people poured into Diraz streets and blocked highways leading up to Shaykh Qasim’s residence, he said, noting that the resistance of Bahrainis has prompted the regime’s decision-makers to cancel the top cleric’s arrest.

Anti-regime protesters have held numerous demonstrations in Bahrain on an almost daily basis ever since a popular uprising began in the country on February 14, 2011. The protesters demand that the Al Khalifah dynasty relinquish power.