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F1 has a clear conscience insists Ecclestone

NEWS STORY
16/06/2016

Ahead of this weekend's race, various groups have urged Bernie Ecclestone and the sport to use the Grand Prix as a means of addressing the country's human rights record.

In a statement released only yesterday, Amnesty International said: "Formula One should use its influence and publicly call on the Azerbaijan authorities to end their crackdown on human rights."

However, speaking in Baku, Ecclestone insisted that the sport has a clear conscience.

"We are taking the issue seriously, absolutely one hundred percent, of course," said Ecclestone. "We have been in correspondence and we have assurance from here that they are looking into all these things.

"We listen, obviously," he continued, "and if people have got a genuine complaint there is not a lot we can do, because in all fairness I think you would get into trouble in most countries if you were very anti some government or political people, or in fact anybody, so it is not quite as easy as that."

However, as he continued, his mood changed.

"The minute people tell me what human rights are, then you can have a look at them and see how and when and where it applies. Do any of you know what human rights are?" he asked.

"I tell you what we ought to do," he continued. "As far as we are concerned, we should not have any races where there is corruption in the country. Can you tell me where we are going to be racing?"

Advised that Sport for Rights claims that media outlets critical of President Ilham Aliyev’s government have been harassed and intimidated, and that four journalists have allegedly died in custody since 2005, Ecclestone said: "While we are here none of you guys will be in trouble and you can write what you want."

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by father guido, 19/06/2016 13:45

"No racing where there is corruption? Well I guess that rules out everybody. You know, just holding a race in any country. Moves that country forward in human rights. Nothing else really need to be said. "

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2. Posted by edllorca, 17/06/2016 15:15

"It is hard for a human to have a guilty conscience while actually counting millions of dollars!"

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3. Posted by The stogie, 17/06/2016 0:13

"Bernie should be more concerned about holding the Grand Prix of Europe in ASIA!!!!!! But hey forget about Spa, Monza, maybe even Canada because we have serious fans here in Baku!!! Talk about selling out the sport. Sad."

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