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ADHRB Founder: Bahrain Wields Finances to Ingratiate with New US Administration

2016-12-10 - 5:15 am

Bahrain Mirror: Husain Abdulla Founder and Executive Director of Americans for Democracy and Human Rights in Bahrain (ADHRB), Husain Abdullah, said that Bahrain's monarchy is trying to ingratiate itself with the incoming US administration by holding its national celebration at Trump Hotel.

In an article on the "Middle East Eye" website (Tuesday December 6, 2016), Abdullah added that, "By boosting President-elect Donald Trump's business enterprise, the Bahraini government has initiated what could define the next four years of the Trump administration."

The article entitled "Bahrain Makes Opening Bid in Auction for US Foreign Policy", Abdullah believed that with this reception, the repressive Gulf monarchy is attempting to wield its financial assets to ingratiate itself with the new administration.

The ADHRB wondered, "Could this mean that American diplomacy is up for sale?"

Abdullah said that "Bahrain is not the first country to curry favor to the incoming president", indicating that some "foreign officials have determined that the quickest way to gain influence with the Trump administration is through his business."

The "Middle East Eye" article further indicated that Richard Painter, the former chief ethics lawyer of George W. Bush's administration, has outlined that by accepting funds to bolster the Trump Organization from foreign governments like Bahrain, the President-elect may quickly find himself in violation of the Foreign Emoluments Clause in the U.S. Constitution.

He clarified that "The clause makes it illegal for officials to accept gifts from foreign powers without the direct approval of Congress."

The ADHRB founder added, "Holding the event at the President-elect's hotel paints a clear picture that Bahraini authorities are willing to use their money to silence any sort of calls for reform. However, throwing money at the world's perception of the kingdom will not alleviate Bahrain's challenges. Only through  guaranteeing civil and political rights will Bahrain ensure stability and security for the kingdom and for US interest in the region."

"By allowing Bahraini officials to hold lavish celebrations of the king's coronation at the Trump hotel in DC, Washington inevitably opens the door to muddying US policy with Bahrain," he also stressed.

Abdullah concluded, "This blurred line between money and politics is dangerous, potentially illegal, and risks undermining US credibility in the international arena."

Arabic Version    


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