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Judo makes statement against political issues about Israeli athletes

28 Oct 2017 23:35

 by Mark Pickering - IJF    IJF Media Team / International Judo Federation
20171028_abudhabi_ijf_moshe_ponte

The final day of the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam 2017 witnessed a historic meeting between the Presidents of the International Judo Federation, the U.A.E Judo, Wrestling and Kickboxing Federation and the Israel Judo Association on #WorldJudoDay 2017 in Abu Dhabi.

Following the final day of competition and the remaining five heavyweight weight categories being decided, the Israel Judo Association President Moshe Ponte wished to thank his U.A.E counterpart, His Excellency Mohammad Bin Thaloub Al Darei, for the hospitality that was shown to the Israel team in Abu Dhabi who won five medals under the name of the International Judo Federation.

Marius Vizer, IJF President, Mr. Ponte, H.E Al Darei and Mr. Naser AL-Tameemi, U.A.E Judo, Wrestling and Kickboxing Federation General Secretary, shared greetings and a positive discussion at the IPIC Arena as the world witnessed a historic meeting on #WorldJudoDay which is the IJF’s annual day of celebration for all judoka and marks the birthday of judo founder Jigoro Kano.

Vizer declared: “It was a gesture of courage, on #WorldJudoDay the President of the U.A.E Judo Federation President, His Excellency Mohammad Bin Thaloub Al Darei, and Aref AL-Awani, General Secretary of Abu Dhabi Sports Council (ADSC), apologised because of the U.A.E athletes not shaking hands with the Israel athletes and also congratulated the Israel team for their success here. 

“Sometimes with courage, respect and politeness, you can solve tensions and conflicts, which have not been solved since many decades. I consider, that even without the flag and anthem of Israel, that their team have been treated very well with high respect during this event. Two years ago we achieved the first participation of Israel team in Abu Dhabi, now it’s the second time, but with a much better approach and I hope in the near future we can achieve the best condition of participation for the Israel teams.

“Such delicate issues between countries, governments and nations cannot be solved overnight and cannot be solved through the sport immediately.

“In the last years the IJF has made a lot of work and important steps for the participation and recognition of the Israeli team in countries like Morocco and Emirates and I hope soon we can break down more barriers for more tolerance between countries and nations to express the real value of the sport, friendship unity and solidarity.”

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  • Peter Paltchik (ISR) - Grand Slam Abu Dhabi (2017, UAE) - © IJF Media Team, International Judo Federation
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