Friday, 7 October 2011

Bahrain and Bad PR: The Latest Revelations

Earlier this year, Bell-Pottinger, Britain's largest PR agency and still the agency probably with the murkiest reputation, suspended a key contract with Bahrain, because of the violent repression there. This action was taken under pressure from us at The Really Ethical PR Agency, among others:

Sadly, however, it appears likely that Bell-Pottinger in effect remains in business in Bahrain, albeit at arms-length: principally, via some kind of sub-contracting relationship with the very unpopular US PR firm, Qorvis. This is what research undertaken by The Really Ethical PR Agency has revealed:"

Meanwhile, the terrible repression in Bahrain continues. The question now is: How low can the Bahraini authorities go? For it is clear that they have tortured and judicially-punished doctors simply for treating protesters against their violent dictatorial regime:

Bahrain doctor jailed for treating activists injured during protests says police tortured her and threatened rape”, Guardian, 30 Sept.

We are ashamed to be from a country whose corporations continue in any way whatsoever to service a despicable regime like that of Bahrain.
It is perhaps encouraging to see that Bell-Pottinger has been working recently for the TNC in Libya and for the Palestinian Authority; we long for the day when every British PR firm is looking to work for at least minimally ethical clients, and refusing to do business with repressive murderous regimes such as Bahrain's.

How low do the Bahraini authorities have to go, before Bell-Pottinger (and Qorvis!) breaks all links with them, closes its Bahrain office, and declares publicly that they agree with us: That continuing to have dealings with violent repressive dictators is just bad PR…

Finally, here is a link showing in useful detail what is known about the PR agencies working for Bahrain, including B-P.

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