Despite Protests, Bahrain To Hold Runoff Election
The Sunni-led Persian Gulf kingdom of Bahrain is in the process of replacing 18 Shiite members of parliament who walked out of the 40-seat legislature to protest the crushing of street protests in March. An opposition boycott ensured dismal turnout in last Saturday's special election, and a run-off for nine seats is set for Oct. 1. The government insists it can move forward on its own with reforms that will restore Bahrain's reputation as a secure and moderate banking hub. But with street protests and civil disobedience occurring almost daily, opposition leaders say a new dialogue is the only way forward.