Reports say police in Bahrain have fired tear gas on protesters in order to prevent them from holding a demonstration in the capital today.
Police moved in heavy vehicles to discourage the latest unrest, part of weeks-long demonstrations led mainly by Shi’ite protesters demanding the resignation of the ruling Sunni monarchy.
Near-daily protests have been held in the capital’s main Pearl Square roundabout following the antigovernment uprisings in Egypt and Tunisia.
Several protesters have been reported killed in the unrest. U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates visited Bahrain on March 11, telling reporters the following day that when it comes to reform, “baby steps” would not be enough.
The country is host to the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet.