Bahrainis express outrage over normalisation deal with Israel

Freedom of expression is rigorously controlled in Bahrain, but, unlike the UAE, its majority Shia population has a tense relationship with the country's Sunni minority royal family.

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu (R) and Bahraini King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa (L).

Bahrainis have reacted with agony at their government’s move to formalize ties with Israel, quickly turning the hashtag “Bahrainis against normalization” into the most popular hashtag and social media topic.

US President Donald Trump celebrated the US-brokered normalization deal on Friday but has enraged many Bahrainis, who have been more outspoken than Emiratis were to their own government’s current agreement with Israel.

Maryam al-Khawaja, the daughter of imprisoned human rights activist, Abdulhadi al-Khawaja, said: “The majority of Bahraini people, however, have always stood against the occupation, oppression, and apartheid against the people of #Palestine.”

The Former MP Ali al-Aswad called it a “black day in the history of Bahrain.”

“You’ll be reminded by history for your support of colonialism and colonization,” he expressed.
Bahrain’s Foreign Minister, Abdullatif bin Rashid Al-Zayani, said the deal represented a ‘historic step towards achieving peace’ in the Middle East. However, the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Hamas both criticized it as “another stab in the back” by an Islamic government.

TRANSLATION:” In the name of God the Most Merciful, The Most Compassionate. We, the Bahrainis will sacrifice ourselves for Palestine, Arabs, and all the Muslims.” (This picture was taken in 1948 in Palestine.)

Freedom of expression is rigorously controlled in Bahrain, but, unlike the UAE, its population has a tense relationship with the country’s minority royal family, whose rule was backed with Saudi military force in the face of demonstrations in 2011.

The oppositional al-Wefaq party decried the deal “a total betrayal of Islam and Arabism and a departure from the Arab, Islamic, and national consensus.”

Hanan Ashrawi, a ranking member of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO), said she was “overwhelmed and heartened” by Bahrainis’s support.

Palestinians in Gaza rallied against the decision on Saturday, burning pictures of Israeli, Bahraini, and Emirati leaders.

Hamas official Maher al-Holy said: “We have to fight the virus of normalization and block all its paths before it succeeds, to stop it from spreading.”

Palestinians burn images of the Israeli PM, the Bahraini king, and the US president  during a protest in Deir al-Balah, Gaza on Saturday [Mahmud Hams/AFP]
Both Turkey and Iran also criticized Bahrain for the deal, calling it a betrayal of the Palestinians.

“The Bahraini rulers will from now on be partners to the Zionist regime’s crimes as a constant risk to the security of the Islamic world,” Iran’s foreign ministry said on a statement broadcast by state TV. “Bahrain’s disgraceful move sacrifices the Palestinian cause and decades of struggle at the cost of the US election.”

Turkey’s foreign ministry called the deal “a fresh blow to efforts to defend the Palestinian cause that will further embolden Israel to continue its illegal practices towards Palestine.”

In a joint statement, Bahrain had agreed to formalize the deal at the same ceremony for the UAE’s agreement at the White House on Tuesday.

A more vital message was sent by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps, who claimed Bahrain would face “harsh revenge” from its people.


Bahrain and Israel’s foreign ministers spoke by phone on Saturday to discuss the new relations, the Bahraini foreign ministry announced.

Iran-backed Lebanese militia Hezbollah also criticized the move.

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  • Educated in Christian Countries, Pro Christian Muslims are ruling all Muslims countries. These rulers do not represent Muslim population.

  • اگلا نشانہ کون ہو گا؟ ایسی کیا آفت آن پڑی ہے کہ اسرائیل کو دھڑا دھڑ تسلیم کروایا جا رہا ہے؟

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