Media of Bahrain

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The media of Bahrain mainly consists of several weekly and daily newspapers, with the Information Affairs Authority running the country's state-owned Radio and Television services.[1] The media is predominately in Arabic though English languaged and Malayalam newspapers are beginning to emerge in the country. The country additionally operates the Bahrain News Agency which monitors, originates and relays national and international news in Arabic and English, usually generating from 90 to 150 stories a day. The agency is an extension of the Information Affairs Authority.[2]

Most of the press is privately owned and is not subject to censorship as long as it refrains from criticizing the ruling family. Al Wasat newspaper and the Bahrain Mirror are regarded as the country's opposition news sources.[1] In June 2012, it was estimated that there were 961,000 internet users in the country.[1]


The country's television is state-owned and controlled by the Information Affairs Authority, which operates over five terrestrial TV networks. An opposition news station, LuaLua TV operates from London, though it is blocked in the country.[1]


Like the country's television services, it is primarily state-run, under the Bahrain Radio and Television Corporation; services are usually in Arabic. Radio Bahrain is also in English. In addition, 'Your FM' is an Indian language radio station primarily serving listeners from the Indian sub continent.[1]


The country's first newspaper was the Newspaper of Bahrain (Arabic: جريدة البحرين‎) weekly newspaper which was first published in the 1940s.[3] Another weekly newspaper, Sada al-Usbu' (Arabic: صدى الأسبوع‎, literally "Weekly echo"), came into publication in 1969. A third weekly newspaper, Al Mujtama al-Jadid (Arabic: المجتمع الجديد‎) came into publication in 1970. In 1971, when the country declared independence, there was a minimal presence of print media in the country. However in 1976, the country's first daily newspaper and arguably one of the principal , Akhbar Al Khaleej (Arabic: أخبار الخليج‎) was published in Arabic by the Akhbar al Khaleej Press company. In 1979, a sister English-language newspaper was started, called Gulf Daily News. In 1989, the Al Ayam (Arabic: الأيام‎) was launched. These three newspapers are considered the principal papers of the country.[3] By the 1990s, there were more than 45 publications in print, which also included company-sponsored newspapers like the Bahrain Petroleum Company's Akhbar paper.[3]

Due to the huge malayali population in the Persian Gulf region four malayalam newspapers also have editions from Bahrain. Gulf Madhyamam started publication in Bahrain in 1999.[4] Malayala Manorama and Chandrika are also published from Bahrain. Another malayalam newspaper Gulf Thejas was launched in Bahrain on 27 September 2012 by Akhbar Al Khaleej editor-in-chief Anwar Abdulrahman at a ceremony held in Manama.[5]

Below is a list of newspapers that currently operate in the country:[1][6][7]

(Arabic title in parentheses)
Akhbar Al Khaleej (أخبار الخليج) daily Arabic 1976 Pro-government
Al Ayam (الأيام) daily Arabic 1989 Pro-government
Al Bilad (البلاد) Arabic Pro-government
Al-Waqt ( الوقت) Arabic 2006 Leftist nationalist
Al-Wasat ( الوسط) daily Arabic Manama 2002 Independent, though considered an opposition newspaper.[1][7]
Al-Watan ( الوطن) Arabic Pro-government
Daily Tribune daily English 1997 Pro-government
Gulf Daily News daily English Manama 1979 Pro-government
Gulf Madhyamam daily Malayalam - 1999
Middle East Chandrika daily Malayalam - 2007
Malayala Manorama daily Malayalam -
Gulf Thejas daily Malayalam - 2012
4PM daily Malayalam - 2012

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g "Bahrain profile - Media". BBC News. Retrieved 1 February 2013.
  2. ^ "About BNA". Bahrain News Agency. Retrieved 14 June 2014.
  3. ^ a b c Rugh, William A. (2004). Arab Mass Media: Newspapers, Radio, and Television in Arab Politics. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 60. ISBN 9780275982126.
  4. ^ "Gulf Madhyamam". Archived from the original on 22 May 2013.
  5. ^ "".
  6. ^ "Bahrain Newspapers and News Media Guide". ABYZ News Links. Retrieved 1 February 2013.
  7. ^ a b Report of the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry (PDF) (Report). Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry. 23 November 2011. p. 399. Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 August 2012.