LONDON – A protester who climbed onto the roof of the Bahraini Embassy in central London on Monday in support of jailed human rights activists in the Gulf kingdom is threatening to jump.
Moosa Satrawi, 30, told the BBC that his actions were aimed at highlighting the plight of Abdulhadi al-Khawaja, a prominent dissident now in the third month of a hunger strike in Bahrain, and Hasan Mushaima, the head of a banned political party in the Gulf state who is suffering from cancer.
“I’m not going down until I hear Mr al-Khawaja call me or Mr Mushaima,” Satrawi said.
“Otherwise I will jump myself from the roof.”
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Satarwai and Mushaima’s son, Ali, managed to access the roof of the embassy in London’s Belgrave Square by scaling scaffolding on a neighbouring building, The Independent reports.
They then unfurled a banner carrying pictures of al-Khawaja and Mushaima, both of whom are currently serving life prison sentences for their role in last year’s pro-democracy protests in Bahrain.
The banner read: “Over 60 days on hunger strike,” according to the Associated Press. Ali Mushaima also criticized a recent decision by senior Formula One officials allowing Bahrain to host the Grand Prix this weekend, telling The Independent:
“If Formula One goes to Bahrain it is saying it supports dictatorship, torture and repression. The Bahraini government welcomes Formula One because it makes them look good.”
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The Gulf state has faced a 14-month uprising aimed at weakening the power of the minority Sunni Muslim monarchy. More than 50 people have died in street battles between police and protesters.
A Metropolitan Police spokesman told the Agence France Presse on Monday: “We were made aware at 1:35pm (1235 GMT) of two protesters on the roof of the Bahraini embassy in Belgrave Square.
“Officers are in attendance and local road closures are in place.”