Mr. Matar Ebrahim Matar

Mr. Matar Ebrahim Matar is a well-known political activist who served as Bahrain’s youngest-elected member of parliament, representing its largest constituency. In February 2012, along with eighteen members from his al-Wefaq political party, he resigned from parliament in protest of the Bahraini regime’s crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrators. During the February 14 uprisings, he encouraged youth participation and informed the media and foreign officials of ongoing developments, actions that later made him a government target. Mr. Matar continues to speak out on behalf of the pro-democracy movement in Bahrain and has testified before the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission of the United States Congress. The author of several articles and book chapters on prospects for democratic reform in Bahrain, Mr. Matar was awarded the Leaders of Democracy Award by the Project on Middle East Democracy in 2011. Through extensive engagement with political experts on the Gulf region, during his fellowship he refined his understanding of the kelpotocratic nature of the Gulf states. His interactions with various think tanks and academic institutions in Washington further enabled him to gauge the perspectives of policymakers who are invested in Bahrain. 


"Understanding the Struggle for Power and the Democratization Process in Bahrain," National Endowment for Democracy, April 25, 2013.


"Bahrain: It’s Now or Never," Democracy Digest, October 24, 2013.

"In the Gulf, A New Model for Creating Democracy," New York Times, August 14, 2013.

"A Deeper, More Accurate Vision," New York Times, August 14, 2013. 

"The US Must Not Bear SIlent Witness to Another Crackdown in Bahrain," The Guardian, August 12, 2013. 

"Bahrain: Still Shouting in the Dark," San Francisco Informer, June 26, 2013.

Sarah Chayes and Matar Matar, "Bahrain’s Shifting Sands," Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, February 13, 2013.


 "Struggle for Human Rights and Democracy in Bahrain: A Discussion," the Fletcher Forum of World Affairs, March 27, 2013.

 RT Arabic, June 18, 2013.