Blog archive: Bahrain

  • 21st February 2014
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Bahrain is to renovate a Jewish synagogue in the capital, Manama, Gulf News reports: Visiting the religious venue, Minister of Culture Shaikha Mai Bint Mohammad al-Khalifa said that she was looking forward to the renovation of the synagogue as one of the iconic places in Manama that...
  • 18th January 2014
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    It's the "Great British Week" in Bahrain – an event designed to celebrate Britain's "friendship" with the repressive Gulf kingdom and secure some lucrative business deals. Staying well away from the protests and teargas, a red London bus is touring the streets and Prince Andrew (the...
  • 22nd December 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    The latest issue of the Middle East Policy Council's journal contains a lengthy essay on US policy towards Bahrain, basically arguing that reforms in the tiny Gulf kingdom should stop short of full democracy. Its author, Ronald Neumann, is a former US ambassador to Bahrain and...
  • 15th October 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Seven public relations firms – mostly British or American – are vying to win a contract from Bahrain's repressive government.  Western PR companies have often been criticised in the past for taking up lucrative assignments aimed at polishing the kingdom's tarnished image. In Bahrain itself...
  • 13th August 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Tomorrow, August 14, is Bahrain’s Independence Day and opposition activists, mostly from the kingdom’s Shia majority, have called for mass demonstrations to press for a "free and democratic Bahrain".  In turn the kingdom’s rulers – from the Sunni minority – have banned protests in the...
  • 1st August 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Bahrain has announced wide-ranging new “security” measures which the prime minister says will give the authorities more power to “combat the scourge of terror and maintain security and stability”. Khalifah ibn Sulman al-Khalifah, who is an uncle of the king and has served as prime...
  • 21st July 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Bahrain's ruling family has a long history of promising reform, and a long history of failing to deliver. We saw it most recently in connection with the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry, where key recommendations are still to be implemented. But that's nothing new: arguments about...
  • 18th July 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    The right of people to get together and organise themselves in pursuit of shared interests is one of the building blocks for a free and open society. It is also something that Arab regimes fear, since active citizenship undermines their authority. Consequently, many of them have introduced laws...
  • 15th July 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    The Gulf Daily News, which bills itself as "The voice of Bahrain", is up to its old tricks again. Under the jubilant headline "Opposition vanishing", it reported yesterday: "A major new survey reveals that support for Bahrain's opposition is dramatically waning as the Premier steers...
  • 8th May 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    When a Gulf regime needs to state in public that relations with its most important ally are "robust and strong", we can be pretty sure that something is amiss. Thus, Bahrain's insistence that all is well between Washington and Manama comes amid increasing friction between the two...
  • 24th April 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Bahrain's foreign ministry has expressed "dissatisfaction" with the US State Department's annual country-by-country report on human rights. It says the section on Bahrain "lacks objectivity and impartiality, and overlooks Bahrain’s progress in maintaining and promoting human rights...
  • 29th March 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    A group of British MPs have "hailed the positive political and economic atmosphere reigning in Bahrain as well as landmark development strides", the Gulf Daily News ("The Voice of Bahrain") reports today. The delegation of MPs, headed by Richard Ottaway, chairman of the House of Commons...

Pages