Bahrainis protest against Formula One race

Bahrainis protest against Formula One race
Sun Apr 21, 2013 21:18:18

Bahraini security forces have clashed with demonstrators only hours ahead of Bahrain's controversial Formula One.

Police fired birdshot and tear gas on Sunday to contain simmering resentment at a deadly crackdown by the royal family on Arab Spring-inspired protests that erupted in 2011.


The Grand Prix was overshadowed by bloody clashes. On Saturday night also Police fired tear gas on to disperse demonstrators in villages near Manama who chanted against the "race of blood," said the witnesses.


Armored security vehicles, police cars and armed guards at road blocks decorated the route into Sakhir in the morning.


Queues at the circuit confirmed a heavy security presence as every vehicle slowed to pass through a single file inspection by gun-carrying security guards.


Hundreds of demonstrators who attempted on Saturday evening to reach Manama's Pearl square, the epicenter of 2011 protests, were forcibly dispersed.


Hundreds had also taken to the streets of villages overnight Friday, prompting clashes.


"Your race is a crime," chanted protesters armed with petrol bombs and stones. "No, no to the race of blood". Police responded with tear gas and stun grenades.


Strategically located just across the Persian Gulf from Iran, Bahrain is a major offshore financial and services center for its Arab neighbors in the oil-rich Persian Gulf.

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