Clashes flare over anti-F1 protests in Bahrain

By Reem Khalifa, AP, 18 April 2013
© AP Photo/Hassan Ammar

Groups protesting Bahrain's Formula 1 race have put up makeshift roadblocks and barricades of burning tyres during clashes with security forces in the violence-wracked Gulf nation.

The demonstrations on Thursday were mostly isolated to anti-government hotbed areas, however, and unlikely to disrupt preparations for Sunday's race, which is the premier international event in the kingdom.

Anti-government groups have stepped up protests against the race in attempts to embarrass authorities. Rights group, including Amnesty International, have criticised Bahrain's arrests and other security crackdowns.

The latest clashes were mostly in Shiite districts that are often scenes of unrest. Graffiti on walls said: "No F1. Don't race on our blood."

Bahrain has faced more than two years of violence between the Sunni-led government and majority Shiites seeking a greater political voice.


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