Kingdom of Bahrain

al-Mamlakah al-Bahrayn

Political Status: Independent emirate proclaimed August 15, 1971; constitution adopted December 6, 1973; constitutional monarchy established on February 14, 2002, under constitutional amendment decreed by the emir in purported accordance with National Action Charter endorsed by national referendum on February 14–15, 2001.

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Area: 258 sq. mi. (668 sq. km).

Population: 1,363,523 (2012E—UN); 1,248,348 (2012E—U.S. Census).

Major Urban Centers (2005E): MANAMA (152,000); Muharraq (119,000).

Official Language: Arabic.

Monetary Unit: Bahraini Dinar (official rate November 5, 2012: 0.38 dinar = $1US).

Sovereign: King Sheikh Hamad bin Isa Al KHALIFA, descendant of a ruling dynasty that dates from 1782; succeeded to the throne as emir on March 6, 1999, upon the death of his father, Sheikh Isa bin Salman Al KHALIFA; proclaimed himself king under constitutional amendment adopted on February 14, ...

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