Protesters, journalists as well as members of the opposition reported on Friday a heavy police presence in almost all villages along Budaiya highway in northern Bahrain in anticipation of the protests planned by Al Wefaq, the main opposition group in Bahrain, and the February 14 Youth Coalition, a youth movement named after the beginning of the Bahraini uprising.
According to witnesses, limited clashes erupted in several villages including in Abusaiba, Diraz, and Sar. Riot police used tear gas against protesters who retaliated by throwing rocks.
Pictures posted on Twitter showed protesters covering their face due to tear gas and running away from police forces.
Bahrain, which is ruled by a Sunni Muslim monarchy and hosts the U.S. Fifth Fleet, has been in turmoil since activists mainly from the majority Shi'ite community began protests in February 2011, inspired by successful uprisings in Egypt and Tunisia.
More than a year later, unrest persists with regular rallies by opposition parties and clashes between youth activists and riot police.
Photos via @ALWEFAQ, @AbusaibaVoice, @Alhojairy, @sayed3li, @mowalee, @ahmadsamiir,