F1 »

Bahrain GP could be hit by 'Day of Rage'

The Bahrain Grand Prix could be hit by widespread protests, despite claims of 'a stable situation' in the kingdom.
Human Rights groups are warning that displays of public unrest could accompany F1's return to Bahrain in October, following the decision to reinstate the race on the 2011 calendar.

Amid claims that ongoing pro-democracy demonstrations continue to be forcibly quelled even as the FIA was announcing the switch of dates that will see Bahrain take up the October slot previously allocated to India - and the newest addition to the F1 firmament move to become the season finale - the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights has warned of calls for a 'Day of Rage' to coincide with the sport's return.

According to Britain's Daily Mirror, the action would include widespread demonstrations and civil unrest, despite previous protests having been met with force, resulting in more than 30 fatalities, hundreds of arrests and ongoing claims of human rights abuses since the uprising first began in February.

“We have buried two bodies today who were victims of the government oppression," Nabeel Rajab, president of the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights, said as the reinstatement of the grand prix was announced, “It is a very sad moment to hear that [F1] feels that their benefits and their interests are more important than the human rights of people in this region.

“It's very upsetting and the people are very upset and already they have called a day of that racing as a Day of Rage where you come out everywhere, in every city of Bahrain, to show anger towards the Bahrain government, what the Bahrain regime is doing towards their own people.”

Motorsport's governing body has claimed that it received 'unanimous' approval to return to Bahrain following a report of 'a stable situation' from FIA vice-president Carlos Gracia, even though there appears to be resistance from within the sport itself.

Red Bull's Mark Webber has already voiced his concerns, while FOTA, the teams association, is to hold further talks on the issue ahead of this weekend's Canadian Grand Prix in Montreal, having already highlighted both logistical and ethical reasons not to hold the race this season.

FIA president Jean Todt has claimed that support for the reinstatement came from all parties in Bahrain, including the opposition groups behind the uprising, but UK sports minister Hugh Robertson points out that there may be good reason for the pro-democracy faction to come out in favour of a return.

"You cannot have a situation where politics overtakes sport," he told Reuters,/i>, "If that happens, you have a disaster on your hands. You can understand why opposition groups might want the race to go ahead if they are planning protests around it and this is a danger."

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Sakhir Circuit, Bahrain F1 Grand Prix, Sakhir, 13-15th, April, 2007
Sakhir Circuit, Bahrain F1 Grand Prix, Sakhir, 13-15th, April, 2007
Sakhir Circuit, Bahrain F1 Grand Prix, Sakhir, 13-15th, April, 2007
Derek Warwick (GBR) FIA Steward and Charlie Whiting (GBR) FIA Delegate with other FIA delegates.
Jock Clear (GBR) Ferrari Engineering Director (Right).
Jock Clear (GBR) Ferrari Engineering Director (Right).
Maurizio Arrivabene (ITA) Ferrari Team Principal (Right).
27.11.2016 - Race, Roger Federer (SUI) tennis player and Bernd Maylander (GER) FIA Safety Car Driver
27.11.2016 - Race, Gerard Berger (AUT), Michael
27.11.2016 - Fia group photo, Michael
27.11.2016 - Fia group photo, Michael
27.11.2016 - Fia group photo
25.11.2016 - Michael
25.11.2016 - Michael
10.11.2016 - Mika Salo (FIN), FIA Steward
30.10.2016 - Race, José Abed (MEX) Vice-President FIA
30.10.2016 - José Abed (MEX) Vice-President FIA
29.10.2016 - Bernd Maylander (GER) FIA Safety Car Driver

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.

© 1999 - 2017 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.