DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Thousands of protesters in Bahrain were filling a main square in the Gulf nation's capital on Tuesday, as Egypt-inspired demonstrations gripped the country for a second day.
Security forces appeared to hold back as the crowds poured into Pearl Square in Manama. The dramatic move came just hours after a second protester died in clashes with police in the strategic island kingdom, which is home to the US Navy's 5th Fleet.
Oppositions groups are calling for greater political freedoms and an end to the ruling Sunni monarchy's grip on key decisions and government posts. The nation's majority Shi'ites have long complained of discrimination.
On Monday, pro-reform marchers clashed with police, leaving one dead.