AFP: 'A leading Iraq-based Shiite Muslim authority on Wednesday condemned a deadly government crackdown on mainly Shiite protesters in Bahrain, saying the violence must stop immediately.
"We condemn this irresponsible act," Basheer al-Najafi, one of the world's four top Shiite authorities, said in a statement.
"We call on those responsible to immediately halt this injustice to citizens," Najafi said from his base in the Shrine city of Najaf in central Iraq.
Hundreds of Bahraini riot police early Wednesday launched an assault in Manama's Pearl Square, where protesters inspired by uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt have been camping for weeks demanding political reforms.
Bahrain's mainly Shiite opposition said at least two protesters were killed and dozens wounded in the violent assault.'