The Kingdom of Bahrain is a significant GCC nation and has one of the fastest-growing economies in the region. Over the years, it has become well-known as a tourist destination as well as a global financial hub. Among its neighbouring countries, it is also considered the freest nation and has diversified its economy to a high degree.
The country also has a large population of expats and receives global recognition and news coverage regularly and when the need arises. However, beyond the international news attention and coverage, there are also many journalists within the country.
A new draft law has arisen, which looks to make specific changes to the treatment of journalists in Bahrain. These specifically relate to their safety when reporting on issues and topics that are more controversial and opinionated.
The duty of journalists is to report the truth and news to the general public. However, such reporting is not always attractive and may bring negative attention to matters. However, it is not the journalist's fault themselves that the stories arise. Issues occur and must be covered, and punishing journalists for expressing opinions or facts is an issue around the world.
However, it is an issue that Bahrain is looking to put an end to. The upcoming law would seek to prevent harm from occurring towards such individuals. They cannot be forced to disclose their information sources and cannot receive jail time.
If matters are more serious though, such as those which would cause harm to the public or statements that would insult the nation's religion or ruler, fines are still applicable. These range from between BD 5,000 to 50,000.