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Saudi troops enter Bahrain to save regime

Thousands of anti-government protesters demonstrate against the king dem in Manama's Riffa Area near the royal palace on March 11, 2011. Bahraini anti-riot police clashed with opposition protesters on the outskirts of Riffa after pro-government supporters were able to pass through police lines and attack the opposition march. Nearly 800 people were injured according to the health ministry, mainly due to tear-gas inhalation. UPI/Isa Ebrahim
Thousands of anti-government protesters demonstrate against the king dem in Manama's Riffa Area near the royal palace on March 11, 2011. Bahraini anti-riot police clashed with opposition protesters on the outskirts of Riffa after pro-government supporters were able to pass through police lines and attack the opposition march. Nearly 800 people were injured according to the health ministry, mainly due to tear-gas inhalation. UPI/Isa Ebrahim | License Photo

MANAMA, Bahrain, March 14 (UPI) -- Saudi and United Arab Emirates troops entered Bahrain Monday to shore up the beleaguered regime, the state news agency said.

The opposition called intervention by the region's Gulf Cooperation Council "an overt occupation of the kingdom of Bahrain and a conspiracy against the unarmed people of Bahrain."

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The move was confirmed by the government's Bahrain News Agency.

GALLERY: Protesters in Bahrain clash with police

Witnesses told The New York Times a convoy of 150 armored troop carriers and 50 other vehicles crossed the bridge into the island kingdom from Saudi Arabia.

Protesters remained on the streets of Manama after bloody clashes Sunday and have taken over part of the business district, Faraz Sanei of Human Rights Watch told CNN.

Human rights activists said more than 1,000 people were hospitalized Sunday, mostly from gas-related injuries.

On Sunday, more than 5,000 people marched in the capital, demanding an end to the monarchy on the island state, security officials said.

The government denied protesters were subjected to unjustified force at various locations.

Parliament's Independent Bloc -- 22 pro-government lawmakers -- called for martial law, asking King Hamad to enforce a curfew and deploy security forces, the news agency said.

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