In its modern capital, Manama, the acclaimed Bahrain National Museum showcases artifacts from the ancient Dilmun civilization that flourished in the region for millennia. [167], Bahrain participates in the Saudi Arabian-led intervention in Yemen against the Shia Houthis and forces loyal to former President Ali Abdullah Saleh,[168] who was deposed in the 2011 Arab Spring uprising. Description Legal. [141] Bahrain's national bird is the bulbul while its national animal is the Arabian oryx. Among the Bahraini and non-Bahraini population, many people speak Persian, the official language of Iran, or Urdu, an official language in Pakistan and a regional language in India. Expressionism and surrealism, as well as calligraphic art are the popular forms of art in the country. [235] Petroleum production and processing is Bahrain's most exported product, accounting for 60% of export receipts, 70% of government revenues, and 11% of GDP. Bahrain's Death Toll Mounts to 34", "UK's relations with Saudi Arabia and Bahrain (further written evidence)", "Gulf media find their red line in uprisings:Bahrain", "U.S. increasingly sees Iran's hand in the supporting of Bahraini democracy supporters", International Electrotechnical Commission, "World Weather Information Service – Bahrain/Manama", International Foundation for Electoral Systems, "Bahrain holds vote to fill seats vacated during unrest", "Voices in Parliament, Debates in Majalis, Banners on the Street: Avenues of Political Participation in Bahrain", "Religion: New Family Law for Sunni Women in Bahrain Not for Shiites", International Center for Law and Religion Studies, "Women in Bahrain and the Struggle Against Artificial Reforms", "Islamist Terrorism and Democracy in the Middle East", "HRH Prince Salman Exchanges Letters With BDF Chief Commander", "Bahrain receives patrol warship "RBNS Al-Zubara, U.S. [141] One globally endangered species, Chlamydotis undulata, is a regular migrant in the autumn. Akhbar Al Khaleej (أخبار الخليج) and Al Ayam (الأيام) are examples of major Arabic newspapers published daily. [231] Bahrain also has the freest economy in the Middle East and is twelfth-freest overall in the world based on the 2011 Index of Economic Freedom published by the Heritage Foundation/The Wall Street Journal. They used a flag with four red and three white stripes, called the Al-Sulami flag[73] in Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, and the Eastern province of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Journalists were targeted by officials during anti-government protests in 2011. The architecture of Bahrain is similar to that of its neighbours in the Persian Gulf. [177], Bahrain first welcomed Israeli cabinet member Yossi Sarid to Manama in 1994. Biskra 33. Manama, Bahrain's capital city, is as modern as other cities in the world. [197], Amnesty International's 2015 report on the country points to continued suppression of dissent, restricted freedom of expression, unjust imprisonment, and frequent torture and other ill-treatment of its citizens. In 1783, the Bani Utbah clan captured Bahrain from Nasr Al-Madhkur and it has since been ruled by the Al Khalifa royal family, with Ahmed al Fateh as Bahrain's first hakim. [68], In 1783, Al-Madhkur lost the islands of Bahrain following his defeat by the Bani Utbah tribe at the 1782 Battle of Zubarah. Much of this population is concentrated in the north of the country with the Southern Governorate being the least densely populated part. About 92% of Bahrain is desert with periodic droughts and dust storms, the main natural hazards for Bahrainis. Bahrain joined the United Nations and the Arab League later in the year. Alcohol is legal in the country, with bars and nightclubs operating in the city. [238] In 2011, due to the combination of the global financial crisis and the recent unrest, the gdp growth rate decreased to 1.3%, which was the lowest growth rate since 1994. Bahrain is the first nation other than United States of America to host International Mixed Martial Arts Federation World Championships of Amateur MMA. They managed to organise a rally attended by 500 participants. [63] In 1923, the British introduced administrative reforms and replaced Sheikh Issa bin Ali with his son. Geologically, the island consists of gently folded layers of sedimentary rocks: limestones, sandstones, and marls (loose clay, sand, or silt) formed during the Cretaceous, Paleogene, and Neogene periods (i.e., from about 145 to 2.6 million years ago). [206] On 31 January 2018, Amnesty International reported that the Bahraini government expelled four of its citizens after having revoked their nationality in 2012; turning them into stateless people. Kingdom of Bahrain Country in the Middle East Bahrain, a nation comprising more than 30 islands in the Arabian Gulf, has been at the center of major trade routes since antiquity. Often described as an archipelago of 33 islands,[134] extensive land reclamation projects have changed this; by August 2008 the number of islands and island groups had increased to 84. [279] Public surveys are rare in Bahrain, but a 2017 national survey found that 62 percent of Bahrainis were Shia and 38 percent were Sunni, which is consistent with most estimates. [13] The capital and largest city is Manama. Summers are very hot. As a result, cases of malaria and TB have declined in recent decades with cases of contractions amongst Bahraini nationals becoming rare. [106] He instituted elections for parliament, gave women the right to vote, and released all political prisoners. Arable land constitutes only 2.82%[4] of the total area. Conflicts between the Shiite and Sunni Muslims are a recurring problem in Bahrain. Bahrain Tourism: Tripadvisor has 86,924 reviews of Bahrain Hotels, Attractions, and Restaurants making it your best Bahrain resource. The majority of Bahraini Muslims are Shiites. A hydrochemical study identified the locations of the sources of aquifer salinisation and delineated their areas of influence. The city, an important religious center in the country, is situated on the Muharraq Island. Women accounted for 66% of graduates in natural sciences, 28% of those in engineering and 77% of those in health and welfare. The country’s chief city, port, and capital, Manama (Al-Manāmah), is located on the northeastern tip of Bahrain Island. [163][164], The Government of Bahrain has close relations with the United States, having signed a cooperative agreement with the United States Military and has provided the United States a base in Juffair since the early 1990s, although a US naval presence existed since 1948. King Hamad enjoys wide executive powers which include appointing the Prime Minister and his ministers, commanding the army, chairing the Higher Judicial Council, appointing the parliament's upper house and dissolving its elected lower house. The sawt style of music, which involves a complex form of urban music, performed by an Oud (plucked lute), a violin and mirwas (a drum), is also popular in Bahrain. ][210], On 11 July 2020, a government watchdog in Bahrain claimed that the confessions of two pro-democracy campaigners were extracted by torture. The northern region of Bahrain is so densely populated and urbanized that it is often considered a single massive metro area. [284] Expatriate Christians make up the majority of Christians in Bahrain, while native Christian Bahrainis (who hold Bahraini citizenship) make up a smaller community. Bahrayn is the dual form of Arabic bahr ("sea"), so al-Bahrayn originally means "the two seas". This… It was completed in December 1986, and financed by Saudi Arabia. It has the smallest hydrocarbon reserves of any Persian Gulf state, producing 48,000 barrels per day from its one onshore field. Encyclopaedia of Islam. In 1965 a month-long uprising broke out after hundreds of workers at the Bahrain Petroleum Company were laid off. [261], Bahrain has been connected to the internet since 1995 with the country's domain suffix is '.bh'. Rainfall is confined to the winter months and averages only 3 inches (75 mm) per year, but this may vary from almost nothing to double that amount. Bahrain hosted the opening Grand Prix of the 2006 season on 12 March of that year. [215] Dr. Nada Haffadh became the country's first female cabinet minister on her appointment as Minister of Health in 2004. As of 2008[update], 37 Jews remained in the country. [239], Access to biocapacity in Bahrain is much lower than world average. [91] This was to bring rapid modernisation to Bahrain. [45][title missing]. In 1971, it declared independence. [343], On August 3, 2020, the Kingdom of Bahrain bought a minority stake in the Paris F.C., a team that plays in France’s second tier. Domestic and foreign relations since independence, 1999–2010: Reforms of Sheikh Hamad ibn ʿIsa Al Khalifah, Bahrain - Children's Encyclopedia (Ages 8-11), Bahrain - Student Encyclopedia (Ages 11 and up). The southern and western lowlands consist of a bleak sandy plain with some salt marshes, while the northern and northwestern coasts afford a striking contrast, forming a narrow belt of date palms and vegetable gardens irrigated from prolific springs and wells that tap artesian water. A number of other languages are spoken among expatriates in Bahrain, including Urdu, Hindi, and Tagalog. 1919 marked the beginning of modern public school system in Bahrain when the Al-Hidaya Al-Khalifia School for boys opened in Muharraq. [97] The period between 2002 and 2010 saw three parliamentary elections. Roughly half of the population is Arab, and most inhabitants are native-born Bahrainis, but some are Palestinians, Omanis, or Saudis. Bahrain developed the first post-oil economy in the Persian Gulf,[18] the result of decades of investing in the banking and tourism sectors;[19] many of the world's largest financial institutions have a presence in the country's capital. [325], In 2018, Cricket was introduced in Bahrain under initiative of KHK Sports and Exelon. In 2011, the country experienced protests inspired by the regional Arab Spring. [322] Ali Bahar was one of the most famous singers in Bahrain. The agricultural and domestic sectors' over-utilisation of the Dammam Aquifer, the principal aquifer in Bahrain, has led to its salinisation by adjacent brackish and saline water bodies. Associate Professor of Political Science, Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama. [86] Britain's interest in Bahrain's development was motivated by concerns over Saudi and Iranian ambitions in the region. (, A letter purported to be from Muhammad to al-Tamimi is preserved at the, Rentz, G. "al- Kawāsim." Boumerdes 24. In 2008, the jobless figure was at 4%,[242] with women over represented at 85% of the total. [141] The many islands and shallow seas of Bahrain are globally important for the breeding of the Socotra cormorant; up to 100,000 pairs of these birds were recorded over the Hawar islands. ", "The King of Bahrain Wants the Jews Back", "If you take my advice – I'd repress them", "Bahrain – Kingdom of Bahrain – Country Profile – Al Bahrayn – Persian Gulf", "Gulf States: Stay Just on the Horizon, Please", "Bahrain remains stable despite arson attacks that took place in the country", "Bahrain's monarch opens parliament after a span of nearly 30 years", "Bahrain: Promising human rights reform must continue", "The Kingdom of Bahrain: The Constitutional Changes", "To Implement the United States-Bahrain Free Trade Agreement, and for Other Purposes", "Bahrain declares state of emergency after unrest", "BICI | Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry", "Report of the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry", "Police Brutality Turns Bahrain Into 'Island of Fear, "The Footage That Reveals the Brutal Truth About Bahrain's Crackdown – Seven Protest Leaders Arrested as Video Clip Highlights Regime's Ruthless Grip on Power", "Bahrain court delays ruling in activists case", "Bahrain protesters join anti-government march in Manama", "Mass pro-democracy protest rocks Bahrain", "Heavy police presence blocks Bahrain protests", "Bomb blast kills three Bahrain policemen", "Tear Gas or Lethal Gas? [141] Twenty-five species of amphibians and reptiles were recorded as well as 21 species of butterflies and 307 species of flora. [84] Prior to the First World War, there were about 400 vessels hunting pearls and an annual export of more than £30,000.[27]. Manama in Bahrain has been rated the best city in the world to emigrate to, in a newly published global survey, which ranked Dublin 47th out of 51 cities.. [246] The Tree of Life, a 400-year-old tree that grows in the Sakhir desert with no nearby water, is also a popular tourist attraction. The group's leaders were subsequently arrested and exiled to India. [133] Although the traditional male attire is the thobe which also includes traditional headdresses such as the keffiyeh, ghutra and agal, Western clothing is common in the country. [285] Various sources cite Bahrain's native Jewish community as being from 36 to 50 people. Following the political liberalisation of the country, Bahrain negotiated a free trade agreement with the United States in 2004. [158] The supreme commander of the Bahraini military is King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa and the deputy supreme commander is the Crown Prince, Salman bin Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa. The Royal University for Women (RUW), established in 2005, was the first private, purpose-built, international university in Bahrain dedicated solely to educating women. [262] The number of Bahraini internet users has risen from 40,000 in 2000[263] to 250,000 in 2008,[264] or from 5.95 to 33 percent of the population. It is considered a part of the Middle East and is an archipelago made up of 33 islands. As a tourist destination, Bahrain received over eight million visitors in 2008. The state consists of two separate groups of islands, which together extend about 30 miles (50 km) from north to south and 10 miles (16 km) from east to west. But life in the island's many villages (and in parts of Manama itself) remains traditional. [313] The Bahrain national museum houses a permanent contemporary art exhibition. Bahrain has five designated protected areas, four of which are marine environments. The country's television network operates over 5 networks, all of which are by the Information Affairs Authority. The wind tower, which generates natural ventilation in a house, is a common sight on old buildings, particularly in the old districts of Manama and Muharraq. [132][133] Bahrain had a total area of 665 km2 (257 sq mi) but due to land reclamation, the area increased to 780 km2 (300 sq mi), which is slightly larger than Anglesey.[133]. [83], Before the development of petroleum, the island was largely devoted to pearl fisheries and, as late as the 19th century, was considered to be the finest in the world. The resulting clash with police soon grew into civil unrest. [267], In November 2008, an agreement was signed to establish a Regional Centre for Information and Communication Technology in Manama under the auspices of UNESCO. [139] Rainfall in Bahrain is minimal and irregular. The quasi-governmental women's group, the Supreme Council for Women, trained female candidates to take part in the 2006 general election. The Cambridge History of Iran, Cambridge University Press 1968 p40, Jean Francois Salles in Traces of Paradise: The Archaeology of Bahrain, 2500BC-300AD in Michael Rice, Harriet Crawford Ed, IB Tauris, 2002 p132. [237] In 2004, Bahrain signed the Bahrain–US Free Trade Agreement, which will reduce certain trade barriers between the two nations. [199] Freedom House labels Bahrain as "not free" in its 2016 report. [33], Alexander had planned to settle Greek colonists on Bahrain, and although it is not clear that this happened on the scale he envisaged, Bahrain became very much part of the Hellenised world: the language of the upper classes was Greek (although Aramaic was in everyday use), while Zeus was worshipped in the form of the Arabian sun-god Shams. Gazelle and hares are not yet extinct, and lizards and jerboas (desert rodents) are common; the mongoose—probably imported from India—is found in the irrigated areas. [76], In the early 19th century, Bahrain was invaded by both the Omanis and the Al Sauds. [292] In 1926, the Education Committee opened the second public school for boys in Manama, and in 1928 the first public school for girls was opened in Muharraq. By 2014, only Mauritania and Palestine had a smaller output in this database among Arab states[268]. [94], After World War II, increasing anti-British sentiment spread throughout the Arab World and led to riots in Bahrain. Bahrain was home to Dilmun, an important Bronze Age trade centre linking Mesopotamia and the Indus Valley. [332] The development of MMA in the nation is convened through KHK MMA, which owns Brave Combat Federation which is the largest Mixed Martial Arts promotion in the Middle East. [198] Human Rights Watch in its 2015 report described the situation of a Shia majority as more than tragic. What ocean does Indonesia lie in? Read the country information page. Bahrain's islands Bahrain Island (al-Awal Island), the country's main island is about 50 km (30 mi) long and 16 km (10 mi) wide. The University of London External has appointed MCG (Management Consultancy Group) as the regional representative office in Bahrain for distance learning programmes. Just half of Bahrainis and Qataris (53%) and two-thirds of those in the United Arab Emirates (64%) had access in 2009. Bahrain × Show Labels. Country code Bahrain Country code according to ISO standards (ISO-3166) ISO 3166-1. Deservedly the country's most popular attraction, this is an outstanding introduction to Bahrain's history, with signage in English and Arabic. This corresponds to 15 articles per million inhabitants, compared to a global average of 176 per million inhabitants in 2013. [292] They were traditional schools aimed at teaching children and youth the reading of the Qur'an. [121] Protests, sometimes staged by opposition parties, were ongoing. The agency has been working to ratify international space-related agreements such as the Outer Space Treaty, the Rescue Agreement, the Space Liability Convention, the Registration Convention and the Moon Agreement. [257] In 2001, Bahrain had a merchant fleet of eight ships of 1,000 GT or over, totaling 270,784 GT. In September, a government-appointed commission confirmed reports of grave human rights violations, including systematic torture. "[202][203] However, in September 2017, the U.S. State Department has approved arms sales packages worth more than $3.8 billion to Bahrain including F-16 jets, upgrades, missiles and patrol boats. [65] For the next two centuries, Persian rulers retained control of the archipelago, interrupted by the 1717 and 1738 invasions of the Ibadis of Oman. [103][104], A popular uprising occurred between 1994 and 2000 in which leftists, liberals and Islamists joined forces. Compared to many countries in the region, the prevalence of AIDS and HIV is relatively low. [260] In 2004, Zain (a rebranded version of MTC Vodafone) started operations in Bahrain and in 2010 VIVA (owned by STC Group) became the third company to provide mobile services. [296] MCG is one of the oldest private institutes in the country. The island also hosts the Bahrain International Airport. Thereafter, the Qarmatians demanded tribute from the caliph in Baghdad, and in 930 sacked Mecca and Medina, bringing the sacred Black Stone back to their base in Ahsa, in medieval Bahrain, for ransom. Bahrain, a nation comprising more than 30 islands in the Persian Gulf, has been at the center of major trade routes since antiquity. In 2016, Bahrain had 0.52 global hectares [240] of biocapacity per person within its territory, much less than the world average of 1.6 global hectares per person. With its highly developed communication and transport facilities, Bahrain is home to a number of multinational firms and construction proceeds on several major industrial projects. [4], Economic conditions have fluctuated with the changing price of oil since 1985, for example during and following the Persian Gulf crisis of 1990–91. The latter was founded in 2009 to undertake research with a focus on strategic security and energy issues to encourage new thinking and influence policy-making. [240], Unemployment, especially among the young, and the depletion of both oil and underground water resources are major long-term economic problems. [15] In 1903, German explorer, Hermann Burchardt, visited Bahrain and took many photographs of historical sites, including the old Qaṣr es-Sheikh, photos now stored at the Ethnological Museum of Berlin. - Cycling Weekly", "The Fighting Life: The Rise of MMA in Bahrain", "Brave To Host 9 Events in Middle East in 2017; UAE to Have An Edition in March", "Bahrain News Agency | Bahrain to host IMMAF World Championships of Amateur MMA", "Bahrain circuit boss: Race not a big risk", "Press Release: FIA Formula One World Championship – Bahrain Grang Prix", Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile, "Bahrain security, protesters clash ahead of Grand Prix", "Protests As Anger Over Bahrain F1 Race Grows", "Bahrain Buys Into Paris F.C., With Plans to Use It as a Billboard", Kingdom of Bahrain, Ministry of Foreign Affairs website, Union of Arab National Olympic Committees,, Arabic-speaking countries and territories, Member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council, Member states of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, States and territories established in 1971, Articles with dead external links from October 2019, Articles with permanently dead external links, Articles with dead external links from June 2016, Pages containing links to subscription-only content, Articles with dead external links from August 2018, Wikipedia indefinitely move-protected pages, Short description is different from Wikidata, Pages using infobox country or infobox former country with the symbol caption or type parameters, Wikipedia articles needing page number citations from November 2020, Articles with unsourced statements from June 2019, Articles with unsourced statements from August 2019, Articles containing potentially dated statements from 2008, All articles containing potentially dated statements, Articles containing potentially dated statements from March 2014, Articles containing potentially dated statements from 2012, Articles lacking reliable references from December 2018, Articles containing potentially dated statements from October 2014, Wikipedia articles in need of updating from November 2020, All Wikipedia articles in need of updating, Articles containing potentially dated statements from August 2013, Articles with unsourced statements from November 2020, Articles with unsourced statements from February 2020, Articles containing potentially dated statements from 2011, Wikipedia articles incorporating a citation from EB9, Wikipedia articles incorporating a citation from the 1911 Encyclopaedia Britannica with Wikisource reference, Official website different in Wikidata and Wikipedia, Wikipedia articles with MusicBrainz area identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SELIBR identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SUDOC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with TDVİA identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. The first revolt and widespread uprising took place in March 1895 against Sheikh Issa bin Ali, then ruler of Bahrain. Gulf Madhyamam is a newspaper published in Malayalam. Islamists opposed the law because "neither elected MPs nor the government has the authority to change the law because these institutions could misinterpret the word of God". The country provides its people with free medical care, education, and old-age pensions. The forty members of the Shura are appointed by the king. Muharraq has the country’s most successful football club, the Muharraq Club and is also famous for its souq, traditional music, and arts. In 2008, approximately 290,000 Indian nationals lived in Bahrain, making them the single largest expatriate community in the country, the majority of which hail from the south Indian state of Kerala. [109], The country participated in military action against the Taliban in October 2001 by deploying a frigate in the Arabian Sea for rescue and humanitarian operations. [172] Bahrain also hosts 36 embassies. Ghardaia 29. [94] Although minimal damage was caused in both locations, the attack forced the Allies to upgrade Bahrain's defences, an action which further stretched Allied military resources. In 1911, a group of Bahraini merchants demanded restrictions on the British influence in the country. [157], The kingdom has a small but well equipped military called the Bahrain Defence Force (BDF), numbering around 13,000 personnel. أخبار الخليج ) and Al Ayam ( الأيام ) are examples of major Arabic newspapers published daily with to... Days a year to 50 °C ( 122 °F ) under the Al-Khalifa is a United Department. Check flight prices and hotel availability for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right your. Bahrain Maritime airport was developed, Chlamydotis undulata, is situated in the,! Use of these is not used in public schools, the prevalence of AIDS and HIV relatively... 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