Bahrain organisers give security assurances 25 Mar 2004
Organisers of next weekends inaugural Grand Prix of Bahrain have stressed that ensuring the safety and wellbeing of those attending the event will be their top priority.
Speaking on matters relating to the security of the Grand Prix and the Kingdom of Bahrain as a whole, a spokesperson for the Ministry of the Interior said, "We recognise that the Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix is the largest sporting festival to have taken place in the Middle East and it is important to stress that all necessary security precautions have been taken. The Ministry of the Interior has been coordinating the national effort in providing the security for the race and has received the cooperation of all the relevant governmental agencies."
Speaking of the Ministry's relationship with the Bahrain International Circuit the spokesperson added, "We are in direct contact with the circuit on a daily basis and are working extremely closely with them to ensure stringent cover at all times."
He added, "The plan the Ministry has includes all aspects of security from low level vandalism to national disasters and international terrorism. The help of the National Guard and certain assets of the Bahrain Defence Force have been brought in to provide a comprehensive and robust national security plan."
While details of the Ministry of the Interior plan cannot be discussed in detail the substance includes:
- A quadrupling in the number of patrols in all key areas throughout the Kingdom.
- Quick reaction teams from various security agencies placed on call 24 hours a day at strategic locations around the Kingdom.
- Civil defence teams at their highest level of readiness during the week of the Grand Prix.
- The National Guard mobilised to protect certain key facilities and contributing to the protection outside the confines of the Bahrain International Circuit.
- A comprehensive traffic management plan put in place with extra patrols to ensure the least amount of congestion for the circuit attendees and the general public.
The spokesperson finished by saying, "The Kingdom of Bahrain takes the issue of national security as a matter of paramount importance and visitors to the Kingdom should rest assured that their wellbeing is being cared for from the moment that they arrive on the island. Hosting the first Grand Prix in the Middle East is of special importance to the people of Bahrain. We want everyone who visits the Kingdom to enjoy their stay with us and to understand that the security plans will be as unobtrusive as possible."