The report which addressed the issues of “Assaults on the press in the world during 2011” pointed out that Bahrain launched a crackdown against the independent news agencies that covered the protests in Bahrain.
The report mentioned that the Bahraini journalists were assaulted, fired from their jobs, arrested, sentences to prison, and ill-treated during detention.
The report also noted the local and international reporters were targeted. An American “ABC” journalist was assaulted and his camera was confiscated in February 2011, as well as several other journalists. 2 CNN journalists were shot at from a helicopter, a CNN journalist was fired, and a CNN team was detained by the Bahraini authorities. It was added that 2 bloggers were detained and charged with anti-state charges and sentenced to a long terms in prison.
The report indicated that several detainees died due to ill-treatment in prison. Abdul Karim Fakhrawi, one of the founders of “Al-Wasat” newspaper, was one of them. “Al-Wasat” newspaper was raided and shut down for a while in April after which 3 journalists were charged with publishing false news.
It was added that 19 journalists were detained during March, April, and May of the year 2011. In addition to the prevention of a large number of journalists to enter Bahrain as well as the expulsion of 20 journalists from the country, who included journalists from BBC, CNN, and CBS.
The numbers showed that at least 92 journalists were arrested and threatened. The deaths of the blogger Zakaria Al-Ashiri and journalist Abdul Karim Fakhrawi were the first journalist deaths to be document since 1992. The false causes of death issued by the authorities were denied by the families of the deceased.