Bahrain profile

Man reading newspaper in Bahrain There is a private press, but most broadcasters are state-run

Bahraini journalists risk prosecution for offences which include "undermining" the government and religion. Self-censorship is widespread.

Journalists were targeted by officials during anti-government protests in 2011. In 2013, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) condemned a "nearly two-year-old policy of harsh repression".

RSF said the authorities "clearly want to obstruct journalists and prevent the flow of information about demonstrations and their suppression by the security forces".

Most domestic broadcasters are state-run. However, Bahrain will host the Saudi-financed Al-Arab satellite news TV channel, expected to launch in 2013. It will be based at a planned "Media City".

An opposition satellite station, Lualua TV, operates from London but has found its signals blocked.

By June 2012, Bahrain had 961,000 internet users (InternetWorldStats.com).

Reporters Without Borders has added Bahrain to its list of "Enemies of the Internet". Rigorous filtering targets political, human rights, religious material and content deemed obscene. Bloggers and online activists have been targeted by the authorities.

BBC World Service is available on FM in Manama (101 MHz in English; 103.8 in Arabic).

The press

Television

  • Bahrain Radio and Television Corporation (BRTC) - state-run; operates five terrestrial TV networks

Radio

  • Bahrain Radio and Television Corporation (BRTC) - state-run; operates General Programme in Arabic, Second Programme featuring cultural and local programmes, Holy Koran Programme, Sports Service, English-language Radio Bahrain
  • Voice FM - private, for Indian listeners

News agency/internet

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