MANAMA, June 11 (Xinhua) -- Bahrain's King Hamad on Monday issued a royal decree that bans members of dissolved political societies from contesting the polls later this year.
The Decree No. 25 of 2018 is an amendment to the 2002 Political Societies Law that was approved unanimously by the Shura Council last month.
King Hamad issued the decree stating those having criminal background and leaders as well as members of defunct political societies will not be allowed to contest the election, according to the Bahrain News Agency.
It is estimated that among those affected will be nearly 4,000 former members of Bahrain's main opposition group, Al Wefaq National Islamic Society.
Bahrain's highest court, the Cassation Court, in February this year upheld a verdict to dissolve Al Wefaq on charges of inciting violence, sectarianism and encouraging participation in illegal rallies.
Parliamentary and municipal council elections are expected to be held in October with candidates contesting for 40 seats each in the lower and upper house.