The transfer of power from Sheikh Hamad to his son, Sheikh Tamim, is mere window dressing. It will have little impact on the tiny sheikhdom’s policies.
The visit of the Emir of Qatar to besieged Gaza Strip has led to much discussion. Was it merely to express solidarity with the Palestinians or there was a broader political objective?
Shaykh Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifah, Bahrain's emir, proclaimed himself king on February 14, declaring the emirate the Kingdom of Bahrain and adding a crown to its flag. At the same time, he also conferred assent on constitutional amendments, and called for municipal and legislative elections in May and October respectively.