Bahrain’s industry is estimated to contribute around 40 percent of gross domestic product (GDP). Oil and natural gas related industries dominate greatly. It is owned largely by the state.
The country’s regime seeks to reduce oil dependency and has therefore made great efforts to broaden the economy. A non-oil-based industry has been developed that mainly produces aluminum, chemicals, cement and other building materials. In addition, there is a shipbuilding industry. Seawater desalination plants have also been expanded.
An investment in upgrading and increasing the capacity of the country’s only oil refinery, in Sitra, is ongoing. The goal is to increase capacity by over 40 percent and the expansion is scheduled to be completed by 2022.
Bahrain’s large aluminum smelters are also under development. A major modernization of the shipyard company Asry is also ongoing.
Protective action for tankers on site
A US-led naval force, formed to protect merchant vessels in the Persian Gulf, officially begins operations. It happens with Bahrain as a base, since the US has access to a naval base there. Since the force began to form in June, several countries have joined, both Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries in the region as well as the United Kingdom and Australia. Cargo ships will receive military escorts through the Strait of Hormuz, where several tankers have been subjected to attacks or sabotage that the United States holds Iran responsible for.
Three sentenced to death are executed
Three men are executed by arching. Two of them are Shia activists who have received their death sentences on terror charges, in a mass trial criticized by human rights organizations. Among other things, authorities have been accused of forcing recognition through torture.
Peace plan is presented in Bahrain
The economic part of the US new peace plan for the Israel-Palestine conflict is presented in Bahrain June 25-26. According to sources in the White House, Morocco, Egypt and Jordan have agreed to participate. The details are not known, however, the idea that Palestinians should be financially compensated if they accept certain political proposals. The political part of the plan will be presented later, dates have not been announced.
Successful efforts against diseases
WHO explains that the communicable diseases measles and red hand have been eradicated in the country. The World Health Organization calls for continued vigilance and vaccination campaigns, especially as the state of war in countries such as Yemen is jeopardizing the spread of infection.
Abuse suspected prison guards are prosecuted
Twelve prison officials, who are accused of abusing prisoners in Jaw Prison south of Manama, are to face trial, a state commission is investigating criminal charges against people in government service. In a separate case, a guard has been sentenced to six months in prison.
Judgments in mass trials against Shiites
The Supreme Court decides the death penalty for two Shiite Muslim activists and the prison sentence for dozens of others accused of terrorist offenses. 47 people are deprived of Bahraini citizenship. In another case, where Shi’ite Muslims are accused of spying on Iran and conspiring against the Bahraini state, HD sentenced 19 Shiites to long prison terms.
More than 500 regain citizenship
Following sharp criticism from abroad, King Hamad orders 551 people to regain their Bahraini citizenship. The decision applies to people who have had their passports revoked by court decisions, which are often based on charges of terrorist offenses. Human rights organizations estimate that 990 people, most Shi’ites, have been deprived of their citizenship as a result of the government’s strike since the wave of protests during the Arab Spring of 2011.
Imprisonment for guerrilla accused
138 people are imprisoned and deprived of their citizenship, accused of harboring terrorist plans. Lifetime imprisonment affects 69 of the defendants. According to the prosecutor, their plans have been to form a Shiite militia similar to the Hezbollah movement in Lebanon. Some have undergone military training in Lebanon, Iran and Iraq. One person was convicted without having his citizenship revoked while 30 were acquitted. 111 of the defendants were present when the verdicts were announced. Since 2012, Bahrain has suspended citizenship for 990 people, according to the London-based organization Bahrain’s Institute for Rights and Democracy.
Prison for criticism against Sudanese president
the 13th of March
Ibrahim Sharif, one of the founders of the al-Waad secular party banned in May 2018, is sentenced to six months in prison and fined for tweeting criticism of Sudan’s ruler Omar al-Bashir. Sharif appeals against the sentence, but the Criminal Code says that anyone who “publicly insults” another country’s leader can be sentenced to two years in prison. Sharif is a Sunni Muslim but in 2011 supported a Shiite-dominated revolt against Bahrain’s Sunni royal house. As a dissident, he has been imprisoned several times.
Death penalty for Shia Muslims
The Bahrain Supreme Court sets the death sentences against two Shia Muslims who were convicted of a 2015 road bomb, which claimed the lives of two police officers. HD also sets prison sentences against relatives of human rights activist Sayed Ahmed Alwadaei (see October 30, 2017). The UN is one of several organizations that accuse the regime of forcing recognition and using the justice system to take revenge on opponents, usually Shia Muslims, who demanded political reform.
Lifetime penalty is set for Wifaq leaders
The Supreme Court decides the life sentence of opposition leader Ali Salman, former leader of the banned al-Wifaq party (see November 4, 2018). The lifetime judges also remain for his co-workers Hasan Sultan and Ali al-Aswad, but they are not in the country.