Following WJC action, International Judo Federation demands UAE tournament cease discrimination of Israeli team - World Jewish Congress

Following WJC action, International Judo Federation demands UAE tournament cease discrimination of Israeli team

Following WJC action, International Judo Federation demands UAE tournament cease discrimination of Israeli team

Judo

NEW YORK –  Following a request by the World Jewish Congress to intervene on behalf of the Israeli judo team competing in the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam this week, the International Judo Federation sent a letter to the UAE Judo Federation demanding that "all delegations, including the Israeli delegation, shall be treated absolutely equally in all aspects, without any exception.”

IJF President Marius Vizer informed WJC CEO Robert Singer on Monday that he had sent the following letter to UAE Judo Federation President Mohamed Bin Thalub, notifying him that: The IJF Statutes clearly provide that the ‘IJF shall not discriminate on the ground of race, religion, gender or political opinion'…According to these principles, which are binding for the entire Olympic Movement including of course the IJF and all national federations and other entities involved in the organisation of any judo sports event, there may not be any discrimination of any kind at any event organised by or supervised by the IJF, including of course the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam.

“Therefore, the IJF hereby demands that at the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam, all delegations, including the Israeli delegation, shall be treated absolutely equally in all aspects, without any exception. IJF further requests that you take all appropriate steps, including if necessary with the public authorities, to comply with IJF’s demand.”
 
In response to the letter, Singer welcomed the IJF’s “principled and correct stance to intervene in the completely unacceptable discrimination being waged against the Israeli team in Abu Dhabi. The Israeli team, as all other teams, should have every right to display its national flag and emblem, and sound its national anthem if victorious. We urge the organizers of the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam to comply with the demand of the IJF to treat the Israeli team equally and fairly.”

“The phenomenon being exhibited in Abu Dhabi this week is regrettably not an isolated incident. Israeli sports teams are routinely subjected to such forms of biased political discrimination. We hope the IJF’s example serves as a reminder to other world sports federations of their obligation to safeguard the fair and equal treatment of all national teams, and to ensure that the countries privileged to host esteemed international events abide by the same principles.”

Singer spoke with the president of the Israel Judo Association, Moshe Ponti, and updated him of the developments. The two agreed to work together to meet future challenges.