Bahrain: Government#

Country nameconventional long form: Kingdom of Bahrain
conventional short form: Bahrain
local long form: Mamlakat al Bahrayn
local short form: Al Bahrayn
former: Dilmun, State of Bahrain
etymology: the name means "the two seas" in Arabic and refers to the water bodies surrounding the archipelago
Government typeconstitutional monarchy
CapitalManama Manama
geographic coordinates: 26 14 N, 50 34 E
time difference: UTC+3 (8 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions4 governorates (muhafazat, singular - muhafazah); Asimah (Capital), Janubiyah (Southern), Muharraq, Shamaliyah (Northern)
note: each governorate administered by an appointed governor
Independence15 August 1971 (from the UK)
National holidayNational Day, 16 December (1971); note - 15 August 1971 was the date of independence from the UK, 16 December 1971 was the date of independence from British protection
Constitutionadopted 14 February 2002; amended 2012 (2016)
Legal systemmixed legal system of Islamic law, English common law, Egyptian civil, criminal, and commercial codes; customary law
International law organization participationhas not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
Citizenshipcitizenship by birth: no
citizenship by descent only: the father must be a citizen of Bahrain
dual citizenship recognized: no
residency requirement for naturalization: 25 years; 15 years for Arab nationals
Suffrage20 years of age; universal; note - Bahraini Cabinet in May 2011 endorsed a draft law lowering eligibility to 18 years
Executive branchchief of state: King HAMAD bin Isa Al-Khalifa (since 6 March 1999); Crown Prince SALMAN bin Hamad Al-Khalifa (son of the monarch, born 21 October 1969)
head of government: Prime Minister KHALIFA bin Salman Al-Khalifa (since 1971); First Deputy Prime Minister SALMAN bin Hamad Al Khalifa (since 11 March 2013); Deputy Prime Ministers ALI bin Khalifa bin Salman Al-Khalifa, Jawad bin Salim al-ARAIDH (since 11 December 2006), KHALID bin Abdallah Al Khalifa (since November 2010), MUHAMMAD bin Mubarak Al-Khalifa (since September 2005)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the monarch
elections/appointments: the monarchy is hereditary; prime minister appointed by the monarch
Legislative branchdescription: bicameral National Assembly consists of the Consultative Council or Majlis al Shura (40 seats; members appointed by the king) and the Council of Representatives or Majlis al Nuwab (40 seats; members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by absolute majority vote in two rounds if needed; members serve 4-year renewable terms)
elections: Council of Representatives - last held in two rounds on 23 and 29 November 2014 (next to be held in November 2018)
election results: Council of Representatives - percent of vote by society - NA; seats by society - Al-Asalah (Sunni Salafi) 2, Islamic Minbar (Sunni Muslim Brotherhood) 1, independent 36, other 1; note - Bahrain has societies rather than parties
Judicial branchhighest court(s): Court of Cassation or Supreme Court of Appeal (consists of the chairman and 3 judges); Constitutional Court (consists of the president and 6 members); High Sharia Court of Appeal (court sittings include the president and at least one judge); appeals beyond the High Sharia Court of Appeal are heard by the Supreme Court of Appeal
judge selection and term of office: Court of Cassation judges appointed by royal decree and serve for a specified tenure; Constitutional Court president and members appointed by the Higher Judicial Council, a body chaired by the monarch and includes judges from the Court of Cassation, sharia law courts, and Civil High Courts of Appeal; members serve 9-year terms; High Sharia Court of Appeal member appointment and tenure NA
subordinate courts: Civil High Courts of Appeal; middle and lower civil courts; High Sharia Court of Appeal; Senior Sharia Court

note: the judiciary of Bahrain is divided into civil law courts and sharia law courts; sharia courts are further divided into Sunni Muslim and Shia Muslim
Political parties and leaders
note: political parties are prohibited, but political societies were legalized under a July 2005 law ++ Al-Wefaq National Islamic Society or Al-Wefeq Ali SALMAN ++ Arab Islamic Center Society Abdulrahman AL-BAKER ++ Constitutional Gathering Society Abdulrahman AL-BAKER ++ Islamic Asalah Abd al-Halim MURAD ++ Islamic Saff Society Abdullah Khalil BU GHAMAR ++ Islamic Shura Society ++ Movement of National Justice Society Muhi al-Din KHAN ++ National Action Charter Society Muhammad AL-BUAYNAYN ++ National Democratic Action Society Radhi AL-MOUSAWI ++ National Democratic Assembly Hasan AL-ALI ++ National Dialogue Society ++ National Fraternity Society Musa AL-ANSARI ++ National Islamic Minbar Ali AHMAD ++ National Progressive Tribune Abd al-Nabi SALMAN ++ National Unity Gathering Abdullatif AL-MAHMOOD ++ Unitary National Democratic Assemblage Fadhil ABBAS ++
Political pressure groups and leadersnone
International organization participationABEDA, AFESD, AMF, CAEU, CICA, FAO, G-77, GCC, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), LAS, MIGA, NAM, OAPEC, OIC, OPCW, PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
Diplomatic representation in the USchief of mission: Ambassador ABDALLAH bin Muhammad bin Rashid Al Khalifa (since 3 December 2013)
chancery: 3502 International Drive NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: (1) (202) 342-1111
FAX: (1) (202) 362-2192
consulate(s) general: New York
Diplomatic representation from the USchief of mission: Ambassador William V. ROEBUCK (since 12 December 2014)
embassy: Building
mailing address: PSC 451, Box 660, FPO AE 09834-5100; international mail: American Embassy, Box 26431, Manama
telephone: (973) 1724-2700
FAX: (973) 1727-0547
Flag descriptionred, the traditional color for flags of Persian Gulf states, with a white serrated band (five white points) on the hoist side; the five points represent the five pillars of Islam
note: until 2002 the flag had eight white points, but this was reduced to five to avoid confusion with the Qatari flag
National symbol(s)a red field surmounted by a white serrated band with five white points; national colors: red, white
National anthemname: "Bahrainona" (Our Bahrain)
lyrics/music: unknown

note: adopted 1971; although Mohamed Sudqi AYYASH wrote the original lyrics, they were changed in 2002 following the transformation of Bahrain from an emirate to a kingdom