UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein on Friday called on the Government of Bahrain to promptly launch an independent, effective investigation into the deaths of five protestors during a security operation last week.

On 23 May 2017, Bahraini security forces conducted a security operation in Al-Diraz Area, where supporters of Sheikh Isa Qassem, the highest Shia authority in Bahrain, had been holding a sit-in since June 2016. At least five protesters were killed and some 286 individuals were arrested. Official accounts suggest that 19 security personnel were injured. This was the third security operation in the area since December 2016 and the deadliest since March 2011. The operation came two days after a Bahraini Court had handed down a one-year-suspended sentence to Sheikh Isa Qassem on charges related to illegal funding and money laundering.

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