Blog archive: Bahrain

  • 29th March 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Human Rights Watch says it stands by its assessment of the situation in Bahrain following an attack on its findings by Britain's ambassador in the troubled Gulf kingdom. At the end of a fact-finding visit last month, HRW said Bahrain’s rulers had "made no progress on key reform...
  • 27th March 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
      Backing the regime in Bahrain: Liam Fox and John Bolton The idea of holding an international conference on "institutional developments and political reforms in Bahrain" prompts the obvious joke that there won't be much to talk about, but this is the theme...
  • 25th March 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Today's edition of the Gulf Daily News ("The Voice of Bahrain") contains no fewer than six stories based on an interview with Britain's skydiving ambassador, Iain Lindsay. In the form it is reported, the interview appears to be an almost unqualified endorsement of Bahrain's...
  • 11th March 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    There was a time when Arab media habitually reshaped the news to fit their official line – deliberately omitting salient facts, grossly misrepresenting what people said, and so on. In a pre-internet age, when national borders could still be sealed against information coming from outside, they were...
  • 27th February 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Bahrain has expressed its appreciation to the UAE for turning away a British academic who was due to speak at a conference in the Emirates last Sunday. Bahrain's foreign ministry said the UAE's decision was "a true reflection of the strong bonds of fraternity between the UAE...
  • 23rd February 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    The London School of Economics (LSE) has cancelled a conference which was due to be held in the United Arab Emirates tomorrow after one of the speakers was turned back at Dubai airport. The conference, entitled "The New Middle East: Transition in the Arab World", listed several prominent Middle...
  • 21st February 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Sheikh Nasser, the controversial son of the king of Bahrain, is organising an equestrian event in Britain, to be held next May in the grounds of Windsor Castle, Bahrain's government news agency (BNA) reports. BNA says the event – an "international endurance horse ride" – will take place "on...
  • 13th February 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    A retired US admiral has joined those calling for the Fifth Fleet to pull out of Bahrain. Dennis Blair, a former chief of the US Pacific Command who also served as Director of National Intelligence in the first Obama administration, complains that American support for democracy and human dignity...
  • 10th February 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    A new round of political dialogue is due to start in Bahrain today amid generally low expectations. The last such talks, in the middle of 2011, collapsed quickly. However, the Bahraini government has faced growing diplomatic pressure to talk to the opposition and the latest talks may...
  • 9th January 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    You couldn't make this stuff up. The Bahrain News Agency reportsthat King Hamad of Bahrain "won the title of Humanitarian Personality of the Year with absolute majority of votes" in a recent poll conducted by a Kuwaiti newspaper, al-Sharq. Apparently, "tens of thousands of personalities...
  • 8th January 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    There's an interesting article – for once – in today's Gulf Daily News (GDN), a generally pro-government newspaper which bills itself as "the voice of Bahrain". The article is an extraordinary attack on what its headline calls "PR mercenaries" – British and American "reputation...
  • 4th January 2013
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Bahrain's habit of excluding foreign journalists, NGO representatives, politicians and others whose work it dislikes has long been common knowledge – though the government denies it. Persisting in that denial may become more difficult following the publication of a report by Bahrain...

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