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Flag of the Kingdom of Bahrain
Coat of Arms of the Kingdom of Bahrain
Coat of Arms of the Kingdom of Bahrain
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Bahrain (/bɑːˈrn/ bah-RAYN, /bæxˈrn/; Arabic: البحرين, romanizedal-Baḥrayn, locally [æl bɑħˈreːn] ), officially the Kingdom of Bahrain, is an island country in West Asia. It is situated on the Persian Gulf, and comprises a small archipelago made up of 50 natural islands and an additional 33 artificial islands, centered on Bahrain Island which makes up around 83 per cent of the country's landmass. Bahrain is situated between Qatar and the northeastern coast of Saudi Arabia, to which it is connected by the King Fahd Causeway. The population of Bahrain is 1,501,635 as of May 14, 2023, based on elaborations of the United Nations data, of whom 712,362 are Bahraini nationals. Bahrain spans some 760 square kilometres (290 sq mi), and is the third-smallest nation in Asia after the Maldives and Singapore. The capital and largest city is Manama.

Bahrain is the site of the ancient Dilmun civilization. It has been famed since antiquity for its pearl fisheries, which were considered the best in the world into the 19th century. Bahrain was one of the earliest areas to be influenced by Islam, during the lifetime of Muhammad in 628 AD. Following a period of Arab rule, Bahrain was ruled by the Portuguese Empire from 1521 until 1602, when they were expelled by Shah Abbas the Great of the Safavid Iran. 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.

In the late 1800s, following successive treaties with the British, Bahrain became a protectorate of the United Kingdom. In 1971, it declared independence. Formerly an emirate, Bahrain was declared an Islamic constitutional monarchy in 2002.

Bahrain developed the first post-oil economy in the Persian Gulf, the result of decades of investing in the banking and tourism sectors; many of the world's largest financial institutions have a presence in the country's capital. It is recognised by the World Bank as a high-income economy. Bahrain is a member of the United Nations, Non-Aligned Movement, Arab League, Organisation of Islamic Cooperation and the Gulf Cooperation Council. Bahrain is a Dialogue partner of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. (Full article...)

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Protesters camped out in front of the Pearl Roundabout days before it was torn down
The GCC Roundabout, known as Pearl Roundabout or Lulu Roundabout (Arabic: دوار اللؤلؤ(ة) Dawwār al-luʾluʾ(ah), "Roundabout of the pearl(s)" was a roundabout located near the financial district of Manama, Bahrain. The roundabout was named after the pearl monument that previously stood on the site and was destroyed on 18 March 2011 by government forces as part of a crackdown on protesters during the Bahraini uprising of 2011. (Full article...)

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Bahrain Tamarod (also spelled Bahrain Tamarrod; Arabic: تمرد البحرين, romanizedtamarrud al-Baḥrayn, "Bahrain Rebellion"), also known as August 14 Rebellion, was a three-day protest campaign in Bahrain that began on 14 August 2013, the forty-second anniversary of Bahrain Independence Day and the two-and-a-half-year anniversary of the Bahraini uprising. The call for protests had started in early July following and inspired by the Egyptian Tamarod Movement that led to the removal of President Mohamed Morsi. Calling for a "free and democratic Bahrain", Tamarod activists, who mobilized social networking websites, said their movement was peaceful, national and non-sectarian. They called for gradual peaceful civil disobedience starting from 14 August. The movement gained the support of opposition societies and human rights activists, including those languishing in prison. The government however, repeatedly warned against the protests, promising those who participate with legal action and forceful confrontation. Rights activists and media reported that authorities had stepped up their crackdown campaigns in the weeks leading to the protests.

In late July, the king called for a parliamentary special session. The pro-government parliament submitted 22 recommendations, some of them calling for stripping those convicted of "terrorist crimes" from their nationality and banning almost all protests in the capital, Manama. Despite outcries from the United Nations, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, the king endorsed the recommendations and issued two decrees to their effect. The Prime Minister asked his ministers to carry out the recommendations immediately and issued several warnings against protests. In the following days, the government arrested three photographers, two bloggers, a lawyer and a politician, prevented human rights activists and journalists from entering the country, deported an American teacher and reportedly encircled entire areas with barbed wire. The government denied arrests had targeted activists. A few days before 14 August, activists said they had gathered tens of thousands of signatures in support of highly anticipated protests. (Full article...)

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More Did you know (auto-generated)

  • ... that Bahraini businesswoman Yara Salman founded a beauty salon, a medical center, an entertainment complex, and a restaurant in the past decade?
  • ... that infectious diseases specialist Jameela Al Salman has supported the development of medical robots and called their use in Bahrain a "pioneering experiment"?
  • ... that as part of Bahrainization, the Bahraini government prohibited foreigners from driving taxis?
  • ... that the 2021 film West Side Story was banned in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman, and Bahrain, likely due to the transgender character Anybodys?
  • ... that Tala Bashmi played on the Bahrain women's national football team for seven years before opening a restaurant in a Manama hotel?




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