Friday, April 20, 2012

Bahrain: Documentary Presents True Account of Circumstances in Bahrain - Ambassador to the U.S

SOURCE Embassy of the Kingdom of Bahrain

Last month, more than 50 D.C.-area diplomats and foreign policy experts joined Bahrain's Ambassador to the United States Houda Nonoo for a documentary screening and a discussion on recent developments and reforms in Bahrain.

The reception at the embassy introduced the documentary "Turning Points: One Month that Changed a Nation," which presents a detailed account of last year's events in Bahrain from the perspective of government officials and opposition members. Produced by Camilla Storey and directed by Vincent DeSalvo, the film distinguishes the protests in Bahrain from those of other Arab Spring countries, and delves into the media's role and the road to reconciliation.

"This film presents a measured narrative of the true nature of events in Bahrain. Through speaking with government officials, Bahraini activists, independent bloggers and others, this film helps shed some light on what occurred in my country," Ambassador Nonoo said.

After the screening, audience members expressed their reactions to the film in an open dialogue with Ambassador Nonoo, and also with Bahraini Member of Parliament Isa al-Kooheji and Arab League Ambassador to the U.S. Hussein Hassouna, who were also in attendance. Viewers recognized the challenges and complexities of reform and were encouraged by the efforts the Bahraini government has taken to unify the country.

Since the uprising, Bahrain's King, His Majesty Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa has called in the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry (BICI) to investigate events and has charged the National Commission with implementing the BICI's recommendations. In less than six months, numerous reforms—including constitutional amendments, training programs for the NSA and increased parliamentary powers—have been implemented and are only the start of the country's reform-minded policies, Ambassador Nonoo said.

"While there have been obstacles, and while much work remains to be done, the Government of Bahrain has made a determined effort to respond to the needs of its people and enact appropriate reform," she said. "As in any progressive society, our work is not now, nor ever will be complete."