New York

24 January 2013

Statement Attributable to the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General on Bahrain

The Secretary-General welcomes the initiative of King Hamad bin Issa Al-Khalifa of Bahrain to convene a political dialogue and the affirmative response from six opposition societies and other societies.  The Secretary-General has consistently called for dialogue and hopes that the parties will follow through on their announcements and ensure that the dialogue is well-prepared, meaningful, fully inclusive, and addresses the legitimate aspirations of the Bahraini people.  This initiative is an important first step towards reforms that ensure justice and human rights for all Bahrainis.

He expects that all communities will be represented fairly and freely and calls on all Bahrainis to contribute to creating a conducive atmosphere for a successful dialogue.