Bahrain ' s top religious leader Sheikh Issa Qassem said that the Manama regime is seeking an opportunity to damage the evidence proving that detained protestors have gone under torture in the country ' s prisons.

Addressing worshipers after Friday prayers in al - Daraz region near Manama, Sheikh Qassem pointed to the remarks made by Bahrain ' s human rights minister who said that Manama is seeking to find a proper situation to specify a date for the visit of the UN special commissioner on torture, and asked, " A proper situation from whose view point, from the government ' s or the UN commissioner ' s. " " By ' specifying a proper date ' they clearly mean proper from the Bahraini government ' s view, " he continued. " The Bahraini government wants to find a proper opportunity to clean the traces of torture, but can this date be specified until people continue asking for their righteous demands, " Sheikh Qassem. " And this clearly mean that the policy of torture(against the Bahraini activists) still continues, " Sheikh Qassem said. His remarks came after a recent report by Head of Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry(BICI) - a body set up by the Bahraini king himself to investigate the events surrounding the uprising - Mohammed Sharif al - Bassiouni. In its report in late 2011, the BICI confirmed what Human Rights First and other international nongovernmental organizations had been saying for months: that the government had swept up thousands in illegal arrests, used excessive force against protesters and engaged in a pattern of abuse that resulted in at least four prisoners being tortured to death. Anti - government protesters have been holding peaceful demonstrations across Bahrain since mid - February 2011, calling for an end to the al - Khalifa dynasty. Violence against the defenseless people escalated after a Saudi - led conglomerate of police, security and military forces from the Persian Gulf Cooperation Council(PGCC) member states - Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Oman and Qatar - were dispatched to the tiny Persian Gulf kingdom on March 2011, to help Manama crack down on peaceful protestors. So far, tens of protesters have been killed, hundreds have gone missing and thousands of others have been injured.