Thousands protest in Bahrain as MPs resign

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Manama, Feb 27 (AFP) Thousands of Bahrainis marched inManama today calling for the fall of the ruling Sunni dynasty,as 18 opposition MPs submitted their letter of resignation toprotest the killing of demonstrators.

The throng of protesters set out from Pearl Square, whichhas become the epicentre of anti-government protests thatbegan on February 14, marching onto a major highway.

Demonstrators carrying a large banner that read "ThePeople Want to Topple the Regime" led the marching protesters,who chanted the same refrain.

The large flag-waving crowd wound its way down thehighway to the Diplomatic Area, marching past the Kuwaiti andSaudi embassies and the Bahraini central bank.

The crowd stopped in front of the Ministry of Justice,roaring "Down, down Hamad!" -- a reference to the Gulf state''sking.

The demonstrators then marched on past the publicprosecution office and the compound where the foreign ministryis located.

They then continued down the street, back toward PearlSquare, as employees from banks and other businesses along theroute, many of them filming with mobile phones, looked on.

Thousands of demonstrators had marched from Pearl Squareto the foreign ministry and back on Saturday, after tens ofthousands of protesters marched to the square and ralliedthere the day before.

Meanwhile, lawmakers said 18 MPs from Al-Wefaq Shiiteopposition bloc officially submitted their letter ofresignation today to protest the deaths of anti-regimedemonstrators, seven of whom have been killed by securityforces since the protests began.

"We are no longer affiliated with this council, which didnot lift a finger in front of these massacres," read theletter signed by the 18 MPs, a copy of which was emailed toAFP.

The 18 MPs of Al-Wefaq, or the Islamic National AccordAssociation, make up the largest single bloc in theparliament, and had last week announced they were quitting theassembly. (AFP)

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