The Information Affairs Authority (IAA) responded sharply to criticism by a group of UK Parliamentarians who have recently criticized the British government for being too lenient with regard to relations with Bahrain.
MPs representing the House of Commons Foreign Affairs Committee have wrongly stated that the Formula 1 Grand Prix held this past April (2012) in Bahrain should have been cancelled.
“We strongly object to these allegations as we feel that the British government did constructively criticize past events in Bahrain, which we have accepted,” an IAA spokesman in a statement said.
“Their decision to leave the question of whether the race should take place in Bahrain to the Formula 1 organizers was the right one, as one could find fault in every nation that hosts the event. We firmly believe that sports should remain separate from politics and obviously the FIA felt the same way because they voted unanimously to proceed with the race in Bahrain,” he said.
The F1 Grand Prix draws in significant investment into Bahrain’s economy and cancelling it would have had an extremely negative impact on those who depend upon it as a key source of income.
“Let’s not forget that the F1 brings people from all walks of life together in a spirit of healthy competition and entertainment. In addition to the organizers, we received support for the race going forward from the F1 teams and drivers, sports enthusiasts, politicians and even members of the political opposition.”