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Tear gas fired at anti-government protesters in Bahrain

AFP - Getty Images

Bahraini protestors run for cover after police fired tear gas canisters to disperse them in the village of Diraz, northwest of Bahrain on Feb. 14 during a demonstration called for on Facebook and inspired by similar initiatives which led to the ouster of the regimes in Tunisia and Egypt.

Hamad I Mohammed / Reuters

A Bahrain woman shows empty packages of tear gas and sound bomb used by riots police in Manama on Feb. 14. Small-scale clashes erupted in two Bahraini villages as security forces tightened their grip on Shi'ite communities for Monday's "Day of Rage" protests inspired by upheaval in Egypt and Tunisia. Helicopters circled over the capital Manama, where protesters were expected to gather in the afternoon, and police cars stepped up their presence in Shi'ite villages, breaking up one protest with teargas and rubber bullets. At least 14 people were injured in clashes overnight and on Monday.

Hamad I Mohammed / Reuters

A protester collapses after inhaling tear gas during a demonstration in Manama Feb. 14. Bahraini police fired teargas and rubber bullets to break up protests on Monday in Shi'ite villages that ring the capital Manama, dampening a "Day of Rage" stimulated by popular upheaval in Egypt and Tunisia.

The AP reports:

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Bahrain's security forces fired tear gas and rubber bullets Monday at thousands of anti-government protesters heeding calls to unite in a major rally and bring the Arab reform wave to the Gulf for the first time.

The punishing tactics by authorities underscored the sharply rising tensions in the tiny island kingdom — a strategic Western ally and home to the U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet.

Riot police — some firing bird shot pellets — moved against marchers in various sites to prevent a mass gathering in the capital, Manama, that organizers intended as an homage to Egypt's Tahrir Square, the epicenter of the popular revolt that drove Hosni Mubarak from power.