Unless all sides to the conflict agree to an inclusive dialogue in order to reach meaningful reform, Bahrain is heading for prolonged and costly political stalemate.
02 March 2015
Continued clashes between protesters and police around 14 Feb anniversary of 2011 uprising; main opposition al-Wefaq said scores injured. Authorities 17 Feb announced criminal investigation into al- ...
Bahrain’s crackdown and Saudi Arabia’s 14 March military intervention could turn a mass movement for democratic reform into an armed conflict while regionalising a genuinely internal political struggle.
A little over four years after Sheikh Hamad bin ’Isa al-Khalifa announced a sweeping reform plan, Bahrain’s fragile liberal experiment is poised to stall, or, worse, unravel. The overlap of political and social conflict with sectarian tensions makes a combustible mix.
The Bahrain Revolt
11 April 2011: In March, after a month of popular protests, the island kingdom of Bahrain called for assistance from its neighbours in the Gulf to defend against an unspecified outside threat. In response, Saudi Arabia and other states dispatched troops and police. Though unspecified, the concern was clear: Bahrain’s Sunni rulers feared Iran’s influence among the country’s majority Shiite population. Joost Hiltermann, Crisis Group’s Deputy Director for the Middle East and North Africa Program, explains why the Iranian threat is overblown. Listen
17 April 2012
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