Bahrain is intensifying its crackdown on media freedom ahead of the 14 February uprising anniversary, when anti-government protesters, inspired by the uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt, took to the streets and called for political reform and equality for the country's majority Shia population.
On 16 January, the government banned the online edition of the country’s only independent newspaper al-Wasat, from “using electronic media tools“. This implies that the paper is not only banned from publishing on its website but also from having any online presence through its different social media channels. The paper has 229K followers on Twitter and more than 354K on Facebook. The newspaper also has a YouTube channel, and an Instagram account.
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