Manama: Bahrain is celebrating with great fanfare its 46th National Day on December 16 and the anniversary of the accession of King Hamad Bin Eisa Al Khalifa to power on December 17.
For Bahrainis, the twin occasions are a new opportunity to stress in various forms their patriotism and to reiterate their allegiance to the nation and king.
All ministries on Thursday hosted receptions for their staff and contribute actively to the festive mood and the sense of deep pride prevailing in the kingdom.
Several private companies and organisations also held small parties for their personnel.
Students also contributed to the festive mood by holding parties at the end of the school day and ahead of the four-day week-end given to all public institutions.
King Hamad will deliver an address on Saturday when he receives congratulations and wishes from the country’s senior officials and officers, head of organisations and diplomats.
Major roads across the kingdom were adorned with lights and signs celebrating the occasions.
Bahrain won its independence in 1971 and King Hamad became ruler of Bahrain in 1999 upon the demise of his father.
The National Day and the Accession Day are days off in the kingdom, but as December 16 is on Saturday, a day off is given in lieu on Monday.