Bahrain grand prix organiser slams 'terrorist' protesters
Thursday 18 April 2013
Bahrain International Circuit chairman Zayed R Alzayani has described those protesting against this weekend's grand prix as "terrorists".
The February 14 Youth Coalition, an underground movement, this week embarked on a campaign entitled "volcanic flames", as part of their condemnation of the Bahrain Grand Prix. Slickly produced videos have appeared on YouTube of the protesters blocking main roads with tyres before setting fire to them, sending the ordinary public travelling in their cars scattering to safety.
It is incidents such as those that anger Alzayani. But the man behind the track that this weekend stages its ninth running of the event has no qualms with those who peacefully call for reform in this troubled Gulf island kingdom. "I am totally against violence. No matter what cause you have you have no right to disrupt the normal process of life," said Alzayani.
"That is not democracy, that is terrorism. There are no two ways about it. Whether you do that hiding behind human rights, politics, religion, it's just wrong. The country and the constitution allow people to protest in a civil, non-violent way. That happens anywhere in the world, and I have no problem with that.
"But to go along and extend that to blocking roads, burning tyres, or attacking police and civilians, the minute you do that you cross the line."
Away from the politics, Lewis Hamilton believes the race will be better than last year from a tyre point of view, as Pirelli have brought their hardest compounds, and believed he now has a Mercedes that can be strong anywhere after a fourth place in the season opener in Australia and two third-place podium finishes in the last two races.
"I couldn't show our true pace in the last weekend's race in China because of rubber debris clogging the flaps in my front wing. When it was cleared during pit stops the car went better, but then started to understeer more as the wing clogged again," he explained.
Chelsea in Thailand: Eden Hazard offered 'free hug' as Jose Mourinho meets a familiar face
Heysel disaster 30th anniversary: Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget that fateful day in Belgium
Paul Scholes column: With Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards
Fifa bomb threat: Swiss authorities confirm a bomb threat has been made at the Fifa Congress
Michel Platini to consider pulling England and other Uefa members out of the World Cup if Sepp Blatter wins Fifa election
- 1 'Cheeky' Nando's under fire for apparently coming onto a customer on Twitter
- 3 Playboy model April Summers speaks out about being a victim of revenge porn
- 4 There is something wrong but very right about this Bible illustration
- 5 iPhone 'effective power' text: how to be safe from iOS bug that lets people crash your phone
EU referendum: David Cameron's rules are a 'democratic disgrace', says French-born Scottish politician set to be denied a vote
British tourists complain that impoverished boat migrants are making holidays 'awkward' in Kos
A nation of inequality: How the UK is failing to feed its most vulnerable people
Australian man punched in the face for defending Muslim women from abuse on train
EU referendum: David Cameron to deny EU migrants and under-18s the chance to vote
David Starkey 'tells Amal Clooney to shut up and stop over-promoting human rights'