"After instability during the late 1990s, Bahrain undertook substantial political reforms, but tensions between ruling Sunni Muslims and the Shiite majority re-emerged in advance of November 2006 parliamentary elections, fueled by Sunni-Shiite conflict in Iraq. Bahrain's stability has long been a key U.S. interest; it has hosted U.S. naval headquarters for the Gulf for nearly 60 years. In September 2004, the United States and Bahrain signed a free trade agreement (FTA); legislation implementing it (H.R. 4340) was signed January 11, 2006 (P.L. 109-169). This report will be updated. See also CRS Report RS21846, U.S.-Bahrain Free Trade Agreement."
CRS Report for Congress, 95-1013