Date: 12th April 2012 at 8:48am
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The advisor for the Bahrain’s Ministry of the Interior has informed FIA president Jean Todt that Bahrain will be safe for the race later this month.

John Yates, who is also the former UK head of counter terrorism believes that drivers, teams, sponsors, media and supporters are currently being misinformed about the current situation in Bahrain by inaccurate reporting and social media.

He confirmed that there had been isolated incidents in the country and the region, but these incidents were minor involving very few people in small villages in the country.

‘Some troubles do still exist, The almost nightly skirmishes that take place in certain villages are a potential block on progress and are putting those involved in their policing and innocent members of the public in significant danger. However, in spite of how these events may be portrayed through the medium of YouTube and other outlets, their significance should not be overplayed.’ he wrote in a letter which has been published in Autosport Magazine.

‘These are now lawful protests, which are permitted, but violent conduct by a very small minority ? often groups of 15-20 young men. These are criminal acts being perpetrated against an unarmed police force who, in the face of such attacks, are acting with remarkable restraint.

‘These people are intent on causing harm to the police and the communities in which they live. They are not representative of the vast majority of delightful, law-abiding citizens that represent the real Bahrain that I see every day. Along with my family, I feel completely safe. Indeed, safer than I have often felt in London.’


Last year the Bahrain Grand Prix was eventually cancelled after previously being postponed by the Bahrain authorities, however this season the Bahrain authorities appear to have no intention to cancel the event themselves, which puts the FIA in a difficult position.

FOTA has already stated that it is the FIA’s decision over whether the event should take place, but teams are expected to meet this weekend in China to discuss the current situation in Bahrain.

Formula One themselves have also placed themselves in a difficult position, while claiming to not be political, it is also very difficult to completely ignore the mounting pressure from governments around the world.

Over the past few months British MP’s have called for the cancellation of the event, while on Wednesday White House spokesman Jay Carney released a statement on behalf of the United States government: ‘The United States continues to be deeply concerned about the situation in Bahrain, and we urge all parties to reject violence in all its forms,’ he said.

‘We condemn the violence directed against police and government institutions, including recent incidents that have resulted in serious injuries to police officers.

‘We also call on the police to exercise maximum restraint, and condemn the use of excessive force and indiscriminate use of tear gas against protesters, which has resulted in civilian casualties.’

 

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