• Bahrain Grand Prix

Human rights group wants F1 to boycott Bahrain

ESPNF1 Staff
January 9, 2012 « F1 trainer Gianotti dies | Bahrain organisers reject boycott calls »
The 2011 Bahrain Grand Prix was eventually cancelled after the teams felt it couldn't take place later in the year © Press Association

A human rights group has urged Formula One teams and drivers to boycott the Bahrain Grand Prix over unrest in the country.

Problems in Bahrain have been ongoing since last year, with the 2011 season-opening grand prix postponed and eventually cancelled as a result. However, the FIA has ratified a calendar with Bahrain scheduled for April, with Bernie Ecclestone saying that he would only reconsider if presented with "incontrovertible evidence that unacceptable things were still happening".

Now Nabeel Rajab, vice president for Bahrain Center for Human Rights, says that the group will be asking for teams to make the decision for themselves.

"We will do a campaign for drivers and teams to boycott," said Rajab. "The government wants Formula 1 to tell the outside world that everything is back to normal ... Formula 1, if they come, is helping the government to say [it is normal]. We would prefer it if it didn't take part. I am sure the drivers and teams respect human rights."