Bahrain’s top Shiite cleric rips into normalization deal with Israel

Bahrain’s top Shiite cleric comes out against the normalization deal with Israel, saying it goes against the will of the people, according to the Reuters news agency.

Ayatollah Sheikh Isa Qassim lives abroad. His condemnation comes two days after Bahrain joined the UAE in announcing it would establish diplomatic ties with Israel this week.

While Shiites make up around 70 percent of Bahrain’s Muslim residents, the ruling monarchy is Sunni, and enjoys close ties with many of the region’s other Sunni states. The ruling elites are firmly allied with Saudi Arabia in its rivalry with Shiite Iran, even as Bahrain’s Shiites have familial, linguistic and political ties with Tehran going back decades.

with agencies

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