Bahrain’s king on Monday banned members of dissolved opposition parties from running for election, months ahead of parliamentary polls, the official BNA news agency said.
The Sunni-led kingdom has been hit by waves of unrest since 2011, when authorities crushed Shiite-led protests demanding a constitutional monarchy and an elected prime minister.
Opposition movements have been outlawed and hundreds of dissidents have been imprisoned — with many stripped of their nationality.
The amended law on “The Exercise of Political Rights” ratified by King Hamad prohibits “leaders and members of political associations dissolved for violating the kingdom’s constitution or its laws” from standing in parliamentary elections.
It also bans anyone “convicted of a felony, even if they have been granted amnesty”.
Individuals who “intentionally harm or disrupt the constitutional and parliamentary process” are also prohibited from running for office, according to BNA.
The revision comes as Bahrain prepares to renew its 40-seat parliament this fall.
Opposition parties boycotted the last elections in 2014.
Since then, authorities have outlawed the main Shiite opposition group, Al-Wefaq, and the main secular opposition group, the National Democratic Action Society (Waad).
Bahrain, a key ally of the United States and home to the US Fifth Fleet, accuses Shiite Iran of provoking unrest in the kingdom.
Iran denies the allegations.