x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 20 July 2017

Bahrain unrest timeline

Events in Bahrain's Arab Spring as they have unfolded.


February 14 As protests ripple across the Arab world following revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt, unrest breaks out in Bahrain where a Sunni Muslim minority rules over a Shiite majority population. Protests focus on Pearl Square in Manama, which security forces attack on February 17. Demonstrations also take place in several majority-Shiite villages.

March 14 Saudi Arabia sends troops to help quash the protests.

March 16 Police backed by tanks and helicopters clear Pearl Square of demonstrators, two days before the Bahraini authorities demolish its symbolic monument.

November 23 The head of an independent commission of inquiry into the unrest says security forces used "excessive force" and tortured detainees during the crackdown, which left 35 dead, five of them from torture.


January 15 King Hamad announces constitutional reforms giving more power to parliament but falling far short of opposition demands.

March 20 The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights criticises Bahraini forces for their "disproportionate use of force" in quelling the continuing protests. It says their use of tear gas may have led to more than 30 deaths.

April 22 The Bahrain Formula One Grand Prix goes ahead despite calls for fresh protests and attempts by protesters to block roads to Sakhir race track.

November 7 Authorities revoke the citizenship of 31 Shiite activists, including two former MPs, for having "undermined state security".


January 7 Bahrain's highest appeals court upholds the prison terms given to 13 activists on charges of plotting to overthrow the monarchy, in a verdict that sparks further protests.

January 23 The appeals court upholds a death sentence and life term passed on two protesters convicted of murdering a policeman during the uprising in 2011.

February 10 Key political figures begin a new round of talks to try to resolve the crisis, after opposition groups make a last-minute decision to join a national dialogue.

February 13 Thousands of Shiites take to the streets of 12 villages.