Alwaght: So you think that Sheikh Isa Qassim’s citizenship stripping comes as part of a pressure some governments are trying to put on Iran?
Daghgh: Yes exactly, that is what I think.
Alwaght: Is it legally or politically possible for a country to remove citizenship of a citizen?
Daghgh: Legally, it is impossible, but the Bahraini king reserves for himself any authority. This is a move by the king. So far, other than Sheikh Isa Qassim Bahrain’s regime has revoked citizenship of more than 250 Bahraini nationals.
Alwaght: How many Bahraini nationals have been stripped of their citizenship before Ayatollah Isa Qassim?
Daghgh: Over 250 people, who all of them were Shiite citizens.
Alwaght: In what conditions are they living now?
Daghgh: Some of them are imprisoned, some others were ousted from the country, and still some others are in Bahrain but are stripped of social and citizenship rights like health care or many other privileges.
Alwaght: Having this in mind, what results and consequences would revoking nationality of Sheikh Isa Qassim and stepping up pressures on Shia citizens have for the Bahraini regime?
Daghgh: The Bahraini uprising would move on with a revolutionary energy even livelier than before and with a stronger morale. Now the demonstrations began and there is under way a gathering near the home of Ayatollah Isa Qassim. The people chant “as long as we have blood in vessels, Ayatollah Qassim remains our leader, and we never forsake our leader.” They also assert that “our revolution is alive and it lives on even more energetic than before.”
Alwaght: Do you think that Saudi Arabia has a hand in all these events?
Daghgh: The major source is Saudi Arabia. The Saudis have plotted along with the Al Khalifa to put the Shia citizens in encirclement in a bid to deal a blow to Ayatollah Isa Qassim. In fact, this plan comes with Britain’s support and US’ green light.
Alwaght: In these conditions, what are the Shias going to do to get out of this situation?
Daghgh: They show support by gathering near Ayatollah Isa Qassim’s home and by staging protests in and out of the country. They also protest through the international organizations like the UN which claim are supporting the human rights. Additionally, such moves of Al Khalifa regime must be confronted by Shiite world’s clerics’ outcry and Shiite people’s demonstrations across the world.
Alwaght: What are the expectations of Bahrain’s Shias from the international organizations and legal institutions concerning these crackdowns by the regime?
Daghgh: The clerics of Iraq and Iran and other countries are supposed to issue statements, and voice opposition to the move by holding protests outside UN centers as well as Saudi and Bahraini embassies in different countries. Now our people in Bahrain have staged rallies and we expect the Muslims in other countries to demonstrate and support the rightful demands of Bahrain’s people.