Bahrain Mirror: The United Nations Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural rights; the Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights; and the Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief said that they have received concerning alleged patterns of continuous discrimination against Shia citizens (mainly Baharna and Ajam), which have been taking place since 2011 and which are undermining their rights to freedom in the area of religion, expression and culture.
In a communication sent to the Bahraini authorities, they further stated that "such discrimination takes the form of destruction of places of worship and other signs of the presence of Shia citizens in the country, their marginalization in the historical narratives of the country, misinformation regarding their religious and cultural identity through the educational system and the media, as well as violence."
The communication sheds light on the destruction of relevant mosques and marginalization in the public space, use of historical narrative to marginalize Shia communities, discrimination in the educational system and in the media, as well as discrimination in public employment and in housing policies.
It also stresses that "the educational material, forming the basis of Bahraini compulsory education system, reportedly undermines the cultural and religious identity of Shia Bahraini."
The information also says that the Shia Jafaari tradition, followed by the majority of the Baharna population, is excluded by the Government from the curricula. Country wide, there is only one legally operating Shia specific school, the Jaafari Institute, which enrolls 1'200 elementary and secondary children. This is only a small fraction of the Shia children and adolescents of the country."