19 Apr 2012

Bahrain hunger striker's wife criticises Ecclestone

5:47 am on 19 April 2012

The wife of a jailed Bahraini activist on hunger strike has accused Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone of ignoring her husband's plight ahead of Monday's controversial grand prix in the troubled country.

Pausing occasionally to wipe away tears and gather composure, Khadija al-Mousawi told Reuters in an interview that she supported Bahrain having the race.

However, she said the 81-year-old F1 boss had missed a chance to do something to help the pro-democracy movement and her husband Abdulhadi al-Khawaja.

Bahrain has been in turmoil since a democracy movement erupted last year, and was crushed initially with the loss of dozens of lives.

Al-Khawaja, who also has Danish citizenship, was jailed for his role in leading the protests.

He has been on hunger strike for two months and is in hospital being fed intravenously while there are almost daily clashes between police firing tear gas and protesters armed with petrol bombs.