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Kingdom of Bahrain
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Flag Coat of arms
Anthem: نشيد البحرين الوطني{{#invoke:Category handler|main}}
Our Bahrain
Location of  Bahrain{{#invoke:String
Location of  Bahrain{{#invoke:String|rep| |2}}(circled in red)

in the Arabian Peninsula{{#invoke:String|rep| |2}}(light yellow)

and largest city

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Official languages Arabic
Ethnic groups (2010<ref name="CIA"/>) {{safesubst:#invoke:list|unbulleted}}
Religion Islam
Demonym Bahraini
Government Unitary parliamentary constitutional monarchy
 -  King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa
 -  Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa
 -  Prime Minister Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa
Legislature National Assembly
 -  Upper house Consultative Council
 -  Lower house Council of Representatives
 -  Declared Independence<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation


14 August 1971 
 -  from UK<ref>Bahrain- Cia World FactBook</ref> 15 August 1971 
 -  Total 765 km2 (187th)
295.37 sq mi
 -  Water (%) negligible
 -  2014 estimate 1,343,000<ref>http://www.ifs.du.edu/ifs/frm_CountryProfile.aspx?Country=BH</ref> (155th)
 -  2010 census 1,234,571
 -  Density 1,626.6/km2 (7th)
4,212.8/sq mi
GDP (PPP) 2014 estimate
 -  Total {{{1}}} (96th)
 -  Per capita $29,146<ref name="imf2" /> (12th)
GDP (nominal) 2014 estimate
 -  Total {{{1}}} (96th)
 -  Per capita $24,281<ref name="imf2" /> (29th)
HDI (2013)Steady 0.815<ref name="HDI">{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation


very high · 44th
Currency Bahraini dinar (BHD)
Time zone AST (UTC+3)
Drives on the right
Calling code +973
ISO 3166 code BH
Internet TLD .bh

Bahrain ({{#invoke:IPAc-en|main}}; Arabic: البحرين‎{{#invoke:Category handler|main}} About this sound al-Baḥrayn]]), officially the Kingdom of Bahrain (Arabic: مملكة البحرين‎{{#invoke:Category handler|main}} About this sound Mamlakat al-Baḥrayn), is a small island country situated near the western shores of the Persian Gulf in Southwest Asia. It is an archipelago with Bahrain Island, the largest land mass, at {{safesubst:#invoke:convert|convert}} long by {{safesubst:#invoke:convert|convert}} wide. Saudi Arabia lies to the west and is connected to Bahrain by the King Fahd Causeway while Iran lies {{safesubst:#invoke:convert|convert}} to the north across the Persian Gulf. The peninsula of Qatar is to the southeast across the Gulf of Bahrain. The population in 2010 stood at 1,234,571, including 666,172 non-nationals.<ref name="2010-census">{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref>

Bahrain is the site of the ancient land of the Dilmun civilisation.<ref>Saudi Aramco World : Oman: The Lost Land</ref> Bahrain was one of the earliest areas to convert to Islam in 628 AD. Following a period of Arab rule, Bahrain was occupied by the Portuguese in 1521, who in turn were expelled in 1602 by Shah Abbas I of the Safavid dynasty under the Persian Empire. In 1783, the Bani Utbah clan captured Bahrain from Nasr Al-Madhkur and has since been ruled by the Al Khalifa royal family, with Ahmed al Fateh as Bahrain's first hakim. In the late 1800s, following successive treaties with the British, Bahrain became a protectorate of the United Kingdom. In 1971, Bahrain declared independence. Formerly a state, Bahrain was declared a Kingdom in 2002. Since early 2011, the country has experienced sustained protests and unrest inspired by the regional Arab Spring, particularly by the majority Shia population.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=news }}</ref>

Bahrain has the first post-oil economy in the Persian Gulf.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=news }}</ref> Since the late 20th century, Bahrain has invested in the banking and tourism sectors.<ref name=EDB>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref> The country's capital, Manama, is home to many large financial structures. Bahrain has a high Human Development Index (ranked 48th in the world) and was recognised by the World Bank as a high income economy.


A 1745 Bellin map of the historical region of Bahrain

In Arabic, Bahrayn is the dual form of bahr ("sea"), so al-Bahrayn means "the two seas", although which two seas were originally intended remains in dispute.<ref name="EoI"/> The term appears five times in the Quran, but does not refer to the modern island—originally known to the Arabs as Awal— but rather to all of Eastern Arabia (most notably al-Katif and al-Hasa).<ref name="EoI"></ref>

Today, Bahrain's "two seas" are instead generally taken to be the bay east and west of the island,<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=book }}</ref> the seas north and south of the island,<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=book }}</ref> or the salt and fresh water present above and below the ground.<ref name="Faroughy">Faroughy, Abbas. The Bahrein Islands (750–1951): A Contribution to the Study of Power Politics in the Persian Gulf. Verry, Fisher & Co. (New York), 1951.</ref> In addition to wells, there are areas of the sea north of Bahrain where fresh water bubbles up in the middle of the salt water as noted by visitors since antiquity.<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=book }}</ref> An alternate theory with regard to Bahrain's toponymy is offered by the al-Ahsa region, which suggests that the two seas were the Great Green Ocean and a peaceful lake on the Arabian mainland. Another supposition by al-Jawahari suggests that the more formal name Bahri (lit. "belonging to the sea") would have been misunderstood and so was opted against{{ safesubst:#invoke:Unsubst||$N=Clarify |date=__DATE__ |$B= }}.<ref name="Faroughy"/>

Until the late Middle Ages, "Bahrain" referred to the region of Eastern Arabia that included Southern Iraq, Kuwait, Al-Hasa, Qatif and Bahrain. The region stretched from Basra in Iraq to the Strait of Hormuz in Oman. This was Iqlīm al-Bahrayn's "Bahrayn Province". The exact date at which the term "Bahrain" began to refer solely to the Awal archipelago is unknown.<ref name=Rentz/> The entire coastal strip of Eastern Arabia was known as "Bahrain" for a millennium.<ref name="maj">{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=web }}</ref>

Bahrain sections
Intro  History  Geography  Politics  Economy  Transport and communications  Demographics  Culture  See also  References  Notes  References  [[Bahrain?section=External</a>_links|External</a> links]]  

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