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BWB63

Dakar Canceled

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This was posted at the official Dakar website:

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 28th 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.

The Dakar is a symbol and nothing can destroy symbols. The

cancellation of the 2008 edition does not endanger the future of the

Dakar. To offer, for 2009 a new adventure to all the off-road rally

passionate is a challenge that A.S.O. will take on in the months to

come, faithful to its engagement and its passion for sports.

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Noooooo...

Are you kiding me?I live 60 kms from the where Dakar would start....I had eveything ready to go and on news: "Dakar cancelled!!!"DAMNNN!!

Last 2 years ive seen it on place and i tell you something:Great event!!Last year was even better:Sit under a huge tree,with a backpack full of food and drink right in front of you,a camera,girlfriend,sun and a scooter to run from traffic on the end..Had some great photos and fun ..if some one wants some ill post here...

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