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Paris Dakar 2008 Rally Cancelled; Safety Concerns


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Dakar 2008 Rally Cancelled; Safety Concerns

 

Lisbon, Friday the 4th of January 2008

 

A.S.O. cancels the 2008 edition of the Dakar rally

After different exchanges with the French government - in particular the Ministry for Foreign Affairs - , and based on their firm recommendations, the organisers of the Dakar have taken the decision to cancel the 2008 edition of the rally, scheduled from the 5th to the 20th of January between Lisbon and Senegal’s capital.

 

Based on the current international political tension and the murder of four French tourists last 24th of December linked to a branch of Al-Qaeda in Islamic Maghreb, but also and mainly the direct threats launched directly against the race by terrorist organisations, no other decision but the cancellation of the sporting event could be taken by A.S.O.

 

A.S.O.’s first responsibility is to guarantee the safety of all: that of the populations in the countries visited, of the amateur and professional competitors, of the technical assistance personnel, of the journalists, partners and rally collaborators. A.S.O. therefore reaffirms that the choice of security is not, has never been and will never be a subject of compromise at the heart of the Dakar rally.

 

A.S.O. condemns the terrorist menace that annihilates a year of hard work, engagement and passion for all the participants and the different actors of the world’s biggest off-road rally. Aware of the huge frustration, especially in Portugal, Morocco, Mauritania and Senegal, and beyond the general disappointment and the huge economical consequences in terms of direct and indirect repercussions for the countries visited, A.S.O. will continue to defend the major values of great sporting events and will carry on its engagement for a durable development through the Actions Dakar, started 5 years ago in sub-Saharan Africa with SOS Sahel International.

 

http://www.dakar.com/indexus.html

 

Safety concerns end Dakar Rally

The 2008 Dakar Rally has been cancelled because of safety concerns in the African republic of Mauritania.

Four French tourists were murdered in Mauritania on 24 December, which led to the French government advising against any travel to the country.

 

Eight of the rally's 15 stages were due to pass through Mauritania.

 

The event's organisers, the Amaury Sport Organisation, said there had been "direct threats against the race issued by terrorist groups".

 

The annual car and motorcycle marathon had been due to start in Lisbon on 5 January with the finish coming in Dakar on 20 January.

 

"Following several consultations with the French government and taking into account its firm recommendations, the organisers of the Dakar have taken the decision to cancel the 2008 edition of the rally," said an ASO statement.

 

 

606: DEBATE

 

Chacor

 

"Based on the current international political tension and the murder of four French tourists but also and mainly the direct threats launched directly against the race by terrorist organisations, no other decision but the cancellation could be taken.

 

"The ASO's first responsibility is to guarantee the safety of all. The ASO reaffirms that the choice of security is not, has never been and will never be a subject of compromise at the heart of the Dakar Rally.

 

"The Dakar is a symbol and nothing can destroy symbols. The cancellation of the 2008 edition does not endanger the future of the Dakar."

 

Daniel Bilalian, head of sport for event broadcasters France Televisions, added that "wisdom had prevailed".

 

"If the slightest incident had happened, it would have been the credibility of the ASO that would have been at stake," he said.

 

The Dakar Rally has been held uninterrupted since 1979 although in the past, stages have been cancelled.

 

Mitsubishi's Stephane Peterhansel claimed his third Dakar Rally title when he won the event last year.

 

 

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/motorsport...lly/7171426.stm

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Read the article a few days ago on the BBC website.

It is a shame but life is more inportant than sports entertainment.

Loved watching the duels between the cars & Bikes.

Great race, great setting/views, will be missed.

I want to lick Edna Krabappel`s Pussy....

Principal Seymour Skinner

 

Proud to be a member http://www.lmhr.org.uk/about/anl.html

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yes a real shame

 

always good viewing over summer with no other moto sport on here

Member since Dec 06.

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This sucks man,

 

what next "The World Tiddlely-Winks Championship", cancelled due to the box of chips being held hostage.

 

The worlds gone mad...

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