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
CapitalManama Manama
geographic coordinates: 26 14 N, 50 34 E
time difference: UTC+3 (8 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions5 governorates (muhafazat, singular - muhafazah); Asamah (Capital), Janubiyah (Southern), Muharraq, Shamaliyah (Northern), Wasat (Central)
note: each governorate administered by an appointed governor
Constitutionadopted 14 February 2002; amended 2012 (2012)
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, KHALID bin Abdallah Al Khalifa, MUHAMMAD bin Mubarak Al-Khalifa
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the monarch
elections: the monarchy is hereditary; prime minister appointed by the monarch
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
Independence15 August 1971 (from the UK)
Judicial branchhighest court(s): Court of Cassation (consists of a chairman and 3 judges); Constitutional Court (consists of a president and 6 members)
note - the judiciary of Bahrain is divided into the civil law and sharia law courts
judge selection and term of office: Court of Cassation and Constitutional Court judges appointed by royal decree and serve for a specified tenure
subordinate courts: High Court of Appeal; middle and lower civil courts; higher and lower shariah courts, and the High Shariah Court of Appeal
Legal systemmixed legal system of Islamic law, English common law, Egyptian civil, criminal, and commercial codes; customary law
Legislative branchbicameral National Assembly consists of the Shura Council or Consultative Council (40 members appointed by the King) and the Council of Representatives or Chamber of Deputies (40 seats; members directly elected to serve four-year terms)
elections: Council of Representatives - last held in two rounds on 23 and 30 October 2010 (next election to be held in fall 2014); byelections to fill 18 vacated seats held in two rounds on 24 September and 1 October 2011
election results: Council of Representatives (2010) - percent of vote by society - NA; seats by society - Wifaq (Shia) 18, Asalah (Sunni Salafi) 3, Minbar (Sunni Muslim Brotherhood) 2, independents 17; Council of Representatives byelection for 18 seats vacated by Wifaq (2011) - seats by society - independent Sunni 8, independent Shia 8, other 2; note - Bahrain has societies rather than parties
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
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
Political pressure groups and leadersSunni: Al-Fatih Awakening
Shia: 14 February Revolution Youth Coalition
Bahrain Islamic Freedom Movement (Said SHIHABI)
Haqq Movement (Hasan MUSHAYMA)
Islamic Amal (Muhammad Ali AL-MAHFUDH)
Khalas (Abd al-Rauf AL-SHAYIB)
Wafa Islamic Society (Abd al-Wahab HUSAYN)
Political parties and leadersnote: political parties are prohibited but political societies were legalized per a July 2005 law
progovernment: Arab Islamic Center Society (Ahmad Sanad AL-BENALI)
Constitutional Gathering Society
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 Dialogue Society
National Islamic Minbar (Ali AHMAD)
National Unity Gathering (Abdullah AL-HUWAYHI)
oppositon: National Democratic Action Society (Ibrahim SHARIF)
National Democratic Assembly (Hasan AL-ALI)
National Fraternity Society (Musa AL-ANSARI)
National Progressive Tribune (Abd al-Nabi SALMAN)
Unitary National Democratic Assemblage (Fadhil ABBAS)
Wifaq National Islamic Society (Ali SALMAN)
Suffrage20 years of age; universal; note - Bahraini Cabinet in May 2011 endorsed a draft law lowering eligibility to 18 years
Government typeconstitutional monarchy
Diplomatic representation in the USchief of mission: Ambassador Shaikh ABDULLA Mohamed Rashed Al Khalifa (since 26 November 2013)
chancery: 3502 International Drive NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: (1) (202) 342-1111
FAX: (1) (202) 362-2192
consulate(s) general: New York
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
International law organization participationhas not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
Diplomatic representation from the USchief of mission: Ambassador Thomas C. KRAJESKI (since 26 October 2011)
embassy: Building #979, Road 3119 (next to Al-Ahli Sports Club), Block 331, Zinj District, Manama
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