Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Iran’s Khamenei Tells Olympic Medalists Athletes Should Boycott Sports With Israelis

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“The genocidal, illegal Zionist regime attempts to gain some legitimacy by appearing in international athletic competitions. The world’s arrogant powers and their cohorts assist and support them in this,” he added. In Tokyo, Iran won seven Olympic medals, three of them gold, as well as 24 Paralympic medals.

Iran’s Khamenei Tells Olympic Medalists That Athletes Must Boycott Sports With Israelis Iran does not recognize the state of Israel and its athletes often forfeit matches or don’t participate when they could face an Israeli opponent.

In one of the more prominent cases, the International Judo Federation (IJF) this year imposed a four-year ban on Iran from the sport because Iranian judoka Saeid Mollaei left the Iranian team in August 2019, claiming he was ordered to throw matches rather than risk facing an Israeli opponent. Khamenei also promised to support Iranian or Muslim athletes that are disciplined by international bodies for boycotting athletic competitions with Israelis.

Mollaei fled to Germany in 2019 and competed for Mongolia in the Tokyo Olympics, winning a silver medal for his adopted country. In response, some international sporting bodies have taken disciplinary action against Iranian sports for discriminatory conduct.

Khamenei instructed “the sports and foreign ministries, as well as the judiciary, to deploy their legal resources to support athletes from this and other Muslim countries, like the Algerian who was recently disciplined”. With reporting by AFP

He was referring to Algerian judoka Fethi Nourine, who withdrew from the Tokyo Games after the draw set him on course for a possible match-up against an Israeli opponent. He was then suspended from the international competition.

He was referring to Algerian judoka Fethi Nourine, who withdrew from the Tokyo Games after the draw set him on course for a possible match-up against an Israeli opponent. He was then suspended from the international competition.

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