Bahrain. In order to protect merchant vessels in the Persian Gulf, a US-led naval force was formed during the year with, among others, Australia, Saudi Arabia and the United Kingdom. In November, the business started. The US has a naval base in Bahrain and this is meant to constitute a port of escort of endangered merchant vessels through the Strait of Hormuz. It was during the summer that Iran seized several vessels, leading to demands, mainly from the United States, on protecting these vessels.
- ABBREVIATIONFINDER.ORG: Click to see the meanings of 3-letter acronym and abbreviation of BHR in general and in geography as Bahrain in particular.
Reporters Without Borders reported in April in its Freedom of Press Index that Bahrain is among the countries that are at the bottom when it comes to freedom of expression and press – along with Djibouti and Eritrea, among others. Some examples: At the beginning of the year, the lifetime sentence for Ali Salman, former opposition leader in the banned al-Wifaq party, was set; in February, judges were set against relatives of human rights activist Sayed Ahmed Alwadaei; in March, one of the founders of the banned al-Waad secular party, Ibrahim Sharif, was sentenced to six months imprisonment for badly tweeting about Sudan’s leader Omar al-Bashir (in Bahrain one must not “publicly insult” another country’s leader); In May, the death sentences were set against two Shi’ite activists accused of terrorist offenses – they were later executed in late July. Human rights organizations accuse Bahrain’s authorities of forcing torturers to confess through torture. It is mainly Shia Muslims who are affected in the Sunni kingdom.
According to CountryAAH, the population of Bahrain in 2019 was 1,641,061, ranking number 152 in the world. The population growth rate was 4.570% yearly, and the population density was 2159.4368 people per km2.