MANAMA (Dispatches) -- Bahrain’s opposition has called on the country’s people to resist a move to normalize relations with the occupying regime of Israel.
Both religious and political figures in the kingdom released statements on Sunday rejecting a deal that is expected to be signed alongside the United Arab Emirates (UAE) at the White House on Tuesday, with the Persian Gulf nations formalizing their relations with the Zionist regime.
"There is a great divergence between the rulers and the ruled in thought, mind, aims and interests. Governments are experiencing a psychological defeat and want to impose it on the people, and the people have to resist this defeat,” said Ayatollah Sheikh Isa Qassim.
Sheikh Qassim is the spiritual leader of Al Wefaq, Bahrain’s biggest opposition society. As the leading cleric for the country’s Shia majority, he has previously criticized their treatment by the minority royal family.
A joint statement on Sunday by a group of Bahraini political and civil society associations, including the Bahrain Bar Association, also stood against the deal.
"What results from normalization will not enjoy popular backing, in line with what generations of Bahrainis have been brought up on in terms of adherence to the Palestinian cause,” the statement said.
The deal would purportedly see Bahrain establish full relations with the occupying regime. Zionist PM Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday he expected to soon see direct flights between Israel and Bahrain.
The first commercial Israeli flight to the UAE was celebrated by Zionist media earlier this month when it carried a joint U.S.-Israeli delegation from Tel Aviv to Abu Dhabi.
Bahrainis were vocally critical after the deal was announced on Friday, making "Bahrainis against normalization” the most popular topic on social media.
The head of Bahrain’s highest court ordered judiciary employees not to attack the regime’s policy or express opinions purportedly harming national unity, Al-Bilad newspaper reported on Sunday.
Bahrainis have previously criticized the Al Khalifa regime’s engagements with Israel, including last June’s conference in Manama to launch a U.S.-led $50 billion economic package as part of U.S. President Donald Trump’s Middle East plan.
Parliament last April joined social media in successful calls to stop Israeli business and regime officials attending an international entrepreneurship conference.
Bahrain has also been harshly criticized by Iran, Turkey and the Lebanese movement Hezbollah, which accused the country of betraying Palestinians.
Palestinians have declared Tuesday a "day of rage”.
"The Palestinian flag will be raised in all Palestinian cities and refugee camps… to emphasize the objection to raising the Israeli flag in Abu Dhabi and Manama,” a Palestinian statement read.
The statement also called on Palestinians to hold protests in front of embassies of the U.S., the occupying regime of Israel, the UAE, and Bahrain around the world.
The Central Committee of the Fatah movement that leads the Palestinian
Authority in the West Bank said the string of Arab betrayal serves to compromise the Islamic and even Christian connections to the occupied holy city of Jerusalem Al-Quds in the Israeli-occupied territory.
Hamas said the normalization bid is nothing but treachery against Palestine and Palestinians that would bring about nothing but ignominy to the Arab regimes.
Morocco’s Islamic Tawheed and Islah Movement also described the agreement between Bahrain and the occupying regime of Israel as an act of betrayal targeting Palestinians.
"Islamabad is committed to supporting Palestine and Palestinians’ legitimate right to independence and freedom,” Pakistani Foreign Ministry’s spokesman Zahid Hafeez Chaudhry also said.
Senior Iraqi Shia cleric and political leader Ammar al-Hakim called the Persian Gulf states’ decision a strategic mistake, saying Baghdad would never normalize its relations with Tel Aviv.
Yemen’s Foreign Ministry echoed an earlier condemnation, saying the Bahraini regime betrayed the blood of the martyrs, who sacrificed their lives for the Palestinian cause, and helped embolden Tel Aviv in its violations.
In Iran, Ali-Akbar Velayati who advises Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei on foreign affairs, said in a statement that the normalization had served to unmask "the enemies of pure Islam and hypocrites.”
Bahrain’s ruling Al Khalifah regime took the decision towards normalization by investing "vain hope in the promises of the criminal U.S. regime that is guilty of murdering thousands of Muslims in the region and beyond,” the statement read.