Monday, August 16, 2004

Olympic, Judo committees avoid dealing with Iran

International sports committees will believe whatever makes their jobs easier.

Yahoo! Sports - Olympics - Judo: Tehran Defiant as Israel Urges Penalty: "Judo: Tehran Defiant as Israel Urges Penalty

ATHENS (Reuters) - Judo's governing body failed to reach a decision on Monday about punishing Iran for its refusal to compete against Israel at the Athens Olympics.

Israel's top judo official had said Iran should be penalized but Tehran remained defiant in the face of accusations that its political boycott was a challenge to Olympic ideals.

International Judo Federation spokesman Michel Brousse said an emergency IJF executive board meeting, following an inconclusive session on Sunday, had been postponed because some executive committee members were unable to attend.

He could not say when it might now take place.

But the IJF would set up a committee, he said, to examine why Iran's world champion Arash Miresmaeili failed to fight Israeli Ehud Vaks in the 66 kg first round on Sunday.

Before the meeting, Israeli judo chief Eddy Koaz said: 'I think the IJF must stand and say that we cannot involve politics in sport and I think also they must punish them, because it is not the first time that they (Iran) have done this.

'We cannot let them just do it because if they do it and nothing happens, other countries will do it again.'"