Isa bin Salman Al Khalifa

Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa I Bahrain

Isa bin Salman Al Khalifa
1st Emir of Bahrain
13th Hakim of Bahrain
Isa bin Salman Al Khalifa 1998.jpg
Isa bin Salman in 1998
Hakim of Bahrain
Reign2 November 1961 – 16 August 1971
Coronation16 December 1961
PredecessorSalman bin Hamad Al Khalifa
SuccessorHimself (As Emir)
Prime MinisterKhalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa
Emir of Bahrain
Reign16 August 1971 - 6 March 1999
PredecessorHimself (As Hakim)
SuccessorHamad bin Isa Al Khalifa
Prime MinisterKhalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa
Born(1931-06-03)3 June 1931
Jasra, Bahrain
Died6 March 1999(1999-03-06) (aged 67)
Sakhir, Bahrain
Al Rifa'a Cemetery
SpouseHessa bint Salman Al Khalifa
IssueKing Hamad
Sheikh Rashed
Sheikh Mohammed
Sheikh Abdullah
Sheikh Ali
Sheika Munira
Sheika Maryam
Sheika Shaikha
Sheika Nora
HouseAl Khalifa
FatherSalman bin Hamad Al Khalifa
MotherMouza bint Hamad Al Khalifa
ReligionSunni Islam

Isa bin Salman Al Khalifa (Arabic: عيسى بن سلمان آل خليفة‎; 3 June 1931 – 6 March 1999) was the first emir of Bahrain from 1961 until his death in 1999. Born in Jasra, Bahrain, he became emir upon the death of his father, Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa.

Early life and Reign

Isa was born in Jasra to Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa and Mouza bint Hamad Al Khalifa (1933-2009), the daughter of Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, and succeeded his father as emir upon his death in November 1961. He was installed in 16 December.[1][2]

Isa visited Ayetollah Mohsin Al Hakim in Najaf in 1968 to indicate his keenness to reinforce relationships with the Shia.[3]

During his reign, Bahrain gained independence from the United Kingdom in 1971.[4] While the government initially considered joining the United Arab Emirates, Isa had his country withdraw (along with Qatar) over his dissatisfaction with the proposed constitution[citation needed]. He then attempted to introduce a moderate form of parliamentary democracy, and men (though not women) were given the vote in parliamentary elections in 1973.[5] In August 1975, however, he dissolved Parliament because it refused to pass the government-sponsored State Security Law of 1974.[6] The parliamentary system was never restored in his lifetime and forced the emir to contend with occasional protests from the leftist and Islamist camps, which reached their peak in 1994 (see: History of Bahrain).[citation needed]

During his reign there was an arrangement between him and his brother, Sheikh Khalifa bin Salman,[7] whereby the Emir was assigned a diplomatic and ceremonial role, while Khalifa controlled the government and economy as Prime Minister.[7]

Marriage and children

Isa bin Salman Al Khalifa had one wife, his cousin Sheikha Hessa bint Salman Al Khalifa (1933–2009), daughter of Salman bin Ibrahim Al Khalifa. They married on 8 May 1949. They had five sons and four daughters:

Legacy and death

During his 38 years as Emir, the economic transformation of Bahrain into a modern nation and a key financial center in the Persian Gulf area took place. Nevertheless, critics note that he also dissolved Parliament, taking on absolute power.

Isa bin Salman Al Khalifa died of a heart attack on 6 March 1999 at the Government House in Manama, shortly after a meeting with the United States defense secretary William Cohen.[8] He was 67.[4] The last function he attended was the funeral of King Hussein, which took place was less than a month before his death.

US President Bill Clinton expressed "deep sadness" at the news of the emir's death calling him "a good friend of peace." UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan also expressed "great sadness," and described the emir as "a force for stability" in the region. He was buried at the Al-Rifa'a cemetery.

He was succeeded by his eldest son, Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa.[8]

Foreign honors


See also


  1. ^ Bernard Reich (1990). Political leaders of the contemporary Middle East and North Africa: a biographical dictionary. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 528. ISBN 978-0-313-26213-5. Retrieved 14 April 2013.
  2. ^ "Chronology for Shi'is in Bahrain". UNHCR. 2004. Archived from the original on 14 September 2014. Retrieved 13 September 2014.
  3. ^ Al Jimri, Mansoor (November 2010). "Shia and the State in Bahrain" (PDF). Alternative Politics (1). Archived from the original (PDF) on 27 September 2013. Retrieved 20 April 2013.
  4. ^ a b Jehl, Douglas (7 March 1999). "Sheik Isa, 65, Emir of Bahrain Who Built Non-Oil Economy". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 16 January 2014. Retrieved 10 April 2013.
  5. ^ Wright, Stephen (June 2006). "Generational change" (PDF). Durham Middle East Papers. Archived (PDF) from the original on 18 May 2015. Retrieved 10 April 2013.
  6. ^ "Democratic test ended". Spokane Daily Chronicle. Manama. AP. 28 August 1975. Retrieved 10 April 2013.
  7. ^ a b Wright, Steven (2008). "Fixing the Kingdom: Political Evolution and Socio-Economic Challenges in Bahrain" (PDF). CIRS. Retrieved 10 April 2013.
  8. ^ a b "Bahrain's ninth al Khalifa". BBC. 6 March 1999. Archived from the original on 3 April 2013. Retrieved 10 April 2013.
  9. ^ "Boletín Oficial del Estado" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 3 October 2013. Retrieved 20 June 2014.
  10. ^ "1995 National Orders awards". INFO. 18 September 2012. Archived from the original on 22 October 2012. Retrieved 20 June 2014.
  11. ^ "Badraie". Badraie. Archived from the original on 5 March 2016. Retrieved 20 June 2014.
  12. ^ "Badraie". Archived from the original on 6 March 2016. Retrieved 20 June 2014.