British TV crew freed in Bahrain

British TV crew freed in Bahrain

A team of journalists for Britain's Channel 4 News was released after being detained while covering Bahrain's Grand Prix race, which went ahead after a week of angry protests away from the track.

Foreign affairs correspondent Jonathan Miller wrote on microblogging site Twitter that he and his crew had been released and were being deported, but that his Bahraini driver and an activist who was travelling with them were still being held.
Security forces told the Channel 4 team that the pair would be released soon.
Miller and his team were arrested yesterday while reporting from a village in Bahrain after the race, a Channel 4 News spokesman said.

"Our primary concern is for the safety of the team, and we are working with the appropriate authorities to secure a swift release," the spokesman said shortly after their arrest.

British Foreign Secretary William Hague wrote on Twitter that he was "very concerned" about the detention and confirmed the British embassy sought urgent consular access.

Miller managed to talk to Channel 4 News while being taken to the police station, revealing that he and his team were surrounded by riot police after being detained following a short car chase.

After leaving the race, Miller headed to a number of Shia villages on the edge of Bahrain City where protests were expected.

The team was on its way back to edit footage of the protests when it was apprehended by security forces, who Miller claimed had been "very aggressive".
Bahrain's King Hamad was among 10,500 spectators on the main grandstand and a smaller audience watched from other platforms as double world champion 24-year-old Sebastian Vettel of Germany led from start to finish yesterday.
The country's Shiite opposition had called for the race, held behind layers of security at a time of soaring tensions in the Sunni-ruled kingdom with a Shiite majority, to be called off.

Right after the race, protesters burnt tyres on the main road linking the capital to the Sakhir race track, witnesses said, as security forces stopped dozens of others from marching towards the now demolished Pearl Square in central Manama.

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