It was the early hours of the morning in Bahrain when the security forces launched a major operation to clear a camp of protesters in the capital, Manama.
Men, women and children ran for their lives. Witnesses say it was a brutal assault. Most people were asleep when the police arrived in force, armed with tear gas and rubber bullets. The opposition say three people have been killed. Dozens are thought to have been injured.
Bahrain’s stability is of strategic importance. The US Fifth Fleet is based there and it is seen as a regional buffer against Iran.
The only people left at the Pearl Roundabout now are the police.
Thousands of people took to the streets three days ago, to demand a greater say in the running of the country, where a Sunni Muslim monarchy rules over a mostly Shi-ite population.