Bahrain. Tensions between Sunni and Shi'a Muslims
continued throughout the year. The kingdom is ruled by the
Sunni Al-Khalifa dynasty but has a Shiite majority. In
January, armed men attacked a prison and released several
prisoners convicted of terrorist offenses. Riots erupted in
the capital Manama the same month after three Shiite men
were executed for murder. It was the first executions in six
years. Amnesty International condemned the executions. Shia
Muslim opposition leader Ali Salman received his prison
sentence in April, shortened from nine to four years. He was
arrested in December 2014, charged with civil disobedience
and "hatred of the royal house". In May, people were killed
by police in connection with a demonstration in a Shiite
village. Nearly 300 people were arrested.
Countryaah.com, Bahrain, together with Egypt, the United Arab Emirates,
Saudi Arabia and Yemen, broke diplomatic relations with
Qatar in early June. The reason is that Qatar is accused of
supporting terrorist groups.
After Lebanon's Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri announced
his departure in early November and took refuge in Saudi
Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Saudi
Arabia urged their citizens to leave Lebanon immediately.
The reason for this was somewhat unclear, but concerns about
an escalated conflict with - and in - Lebanon are certainly
behind the decision.