Amnesty International Says Serious Rights Violations Persist in Bahrain Despite Reforms

Amnesty International said in a report released Thursday that government reforms put in place by Bahraini authorities in the wake of widespread anti-government protests four years ago have failed to end serious violations of human rights in the strategically important Gulf nation. The 79-page report documents what the London-based group calls a "chilling crackdown on dissent" that includes the continued jailing of activists, bans on protests in the capital and instances of torture and other mistreatment of detainees.
Western-allied Bahrain, a small island kingdom that is home to the U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet, was rocked by large-scale protests in February 2011 that were led by the country's majority Shiites seeking greater political rights from the Sunni monarchy. Bahraini authorities, backed by security forces from nearby Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, crushed the demonstrations, but low-level unrest continues.