@MazenMahdi #EPA | Sheikh Ali Salman, secretary-general of the leading Shiite opposition grouping Al-Wefaq, addresses pro-reform protesters attending a sit-in for the opposition groups in Maqsha village, north the Bahraini capital Manama 7 December 2012. The 8th Manama Dialogue organized by the London based International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) which will run until 9 December 2012 opened in Bahrain with focus predominantly on Syria and broad regional security issues. Government officials from Syria have not been invited while Iran, Russia, and Iraq have opted to send in small delegations. Bahraini opposition groups which challenged a ban on protests hours before the opening session in near-by Maqsha village, north of Manama, by gathering thousands of its supporters for a sit-in criticized the international community for failing to address the situation in Bahrain and deciding to ignore it in the summit. EFE/EPA/MAZEN MAHDI