The Al-Khulaifi regime has been completely silent about the law recently signed by US President Joe Biden regarding prisoners of conscience and dissidents in Bahrain.
Observers highlighted that Manama abandoned the slogan of sovereignty and non-interference in internal affairs and did not dare to direct any criticism of the US administration in its action against it.
Sovereignty represents one of the problems that the Al-Khalifa regime raises from time to time, especially in light of its weak position and rule that is not based on popular choice and ballot boxes.
The Al-Khalifa regime has always adopted varying reactions. If a strong state issued the criticism, the regime would remain silent because it fears the continuation of pressure.
However, if the criticism was issued from the other side, a comprehensive mobilization of all the regime’s organs occurred to launch a sweeping attack on that side.
It is rare for the Khulaifi regime to respond to criticism objectively by discussing the issues raised in calm scientific methods and using facts to refute the allegations.
On March 30, Biden signed a draft bill calling for the US State Department to be held accountable for efforts to release political prisoners in Bahrain, to be adopted mainly in mid-May.
The bill stipulates that the US Secretary of State must submit a detailed report, when necessary, that includes the efforts made by the US administration to release political prisoners in Bahrain, including the positions of the Bahrain government on those efforts.
The statement accompanying the Consolidated Appropriations Law for the Fiscal Year 2022 states that not later than 60 days after the enactment of the law, the Minister of State shall submit a report to the Appropriations Committees, which can be in the form of a workbook if necessary, that includes details of efforts made for the benefit of political prisoners in Bahrain and the responses of the Government of Bahrain.
Support for this law was bipartisan, Republican and Democratic.
The Senate Appropriations Committee originally submitted the report. The committee adopted phrases that encourage “the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to prioritize working with the government of Bahrain to make tangible progress towards establishing democratic institutions and holding those responsible for human rights violations accountable, including in the armed forces and the Ministry of Interior.”
The report is expected to be submitted no later than May 15 2022. The action was taken before the parliamentary elections scheduled for Bahrain in November 2022.
The last parliamentary elections held in Bahrain in 2018 were undemocratic, unfree and unfair, and the government of Bahrain refused to allow outside observers to monitor the 2018 elections.
The response of the Bahrain government was lacklustre, without talking about interference in internal affairs.
Some writers affiliated with the Khalifa regime wrote columns appealing to the US president “not to be deceived by the claims of terrorists and malicious men.”
But we did not notice any solid Bahraini action against Washington, such as withdrawing the Bahraini ambassador or even summoning the American ambassador to protest.