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Friday, March 5, 2021

Swimming body warns Doha, Dubai hosts over Israeli snub

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swimming

Following allegations that Israeli athletes were snubbed at the FINA Swimming World Cup in Doha and Dubai, the international body has issued a warning to both cities.

Organizing committees here and in the UAE have been told to adhere to the contest’s rules, which ban discrimination on political grounds.

The warning was given in response to complaints that Israeli swimmers had been removed from television coverage and that efforts were made to avoid listing them on results tables. FINA said in a statement:

“FINA gave a warning to the organisers of the two FINA Swimming World Cup meets and recalled them that the FINA rules must be equally applied by all FINA National Federations. Moreover, FINA guarantees that all steps will be taken in the future for such acts not to occur again.”

Speaking to Doha News, a FINA spokesperson confirmed that complaints about TV coverage of the event had been received, adding that “there were some mistakes on television” in both the UAE and Qatar.

FINA

However, he claimed that the federation “had not been monitoring” the television coverage, and added that “rules were fully applied” once the problems were brought to light.

The allegations follow an online furor earlier this week over the flying of the Israeli flag in Qatar during the FINA Swimming World Cup. The flag had been raised (among others) outside of the FINA venue, the Hamad Aquatic Center, which is part of Aspire Zone, and was later removed.

Complaints

Israeli swimmer Amit Ivri won a bronze medal for 100 meters breaststroke at Dubai, and took silver in Doha for the 100 medley. Ivri herself told media that she preferred “not to talk politics.” But team member Gal Nevo told Israeli newspaper Haaretz why the delegation felt it had grounds for complaint about the television coverage of her race in Dubai:

“I watched the broadcast where Amit Ivry won a medal,” he told the paper. “She swam in lane 1, but the broadcast focused completely on the other half of the pool. Of course there weren’t any results (announced), and it was impossible to know if she’d finished in third place.”

FINA state that “the incidents of the first day” were not repeated on the second day of the event in Dubai.

No details of the specific complaints made about Doha’s television coverage have been released, but FINA have said that they were only told of the issues 15 minutes before the end of the second day finals’ session.

Speaking to Doha News, a FINA spokesman was keen to point out that the medal ceremony held in Doha for Ivri was held according to the contest’s rules, including the hoisting of an Israeli flag.

He said he was “unaware” that the Israeli flag had been taken down from the display outside the Doha venue.

Organizers of both the Dubai and Doha events have apologized for the issues with the television coverage, he added.

Responding to the allegations, and acknowledging that Israeli swimmers had faced difficulties obtaining visas for FINA events in the Gulf in recent years, FINA executive director Cornel Marculescu told the Associated Press:

“Every year we have events there and we never had things like this. This time there was no problem (with visas). Only these stupid things.”

FINA has promised that transgressions such as these will not be tolerated at future events, a key issue for Doha and Dubai, which will both host the Swimming World Cup again next year. Furthermore, the 12th FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) will also take place in Doha in December 2014.

Thoughts?

Credit: Photo from the FINA Swimming World Cup page on Facebook 

25 COMMENTS

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MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago

Maybe countries that have problems with others should not bid for such world events or hold their own unoffical meetings and just invite the countries they like.

Ali
Ali
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

This allows such countries to show how hypocritical the world is that it is outraged at mere removal of flags but turns a blind eye towards removal of whole country systematically.

desertCard
desertCard
7 years ago
Reply to  Ali

Again Ali you miss the point.

Abdulrahman
Abdulrahman
7 years ago
Reply to  desertCard

Pot meet kettle (sorry, but you really asked for it) 😀

desertCard
desertCard
7 years ago
Reply to  Abdulrahman

I’m sure you and Ali feel the PLO was justified in ’72 as well huh?

Annon
Annon
7 years ago
Reply to  Ali

This is sport not politics,can’t accept all,don’t host the event,very simple.

Mohammed Albanai
Mohammed Albanai
7 years ago
Reply to  Annon

Doesn’t America give iranians problems over over visa applications when they attend world events in the US? Don’t see how this is different

Myrddin
Myrddin
7 years ago

Yet 18 Iranian competitors went to Atlanta Games – and won 3 medals. So no big problems then?

Mohammed Albanai
Mohammed Albanai
7 years ago
Reply to  Myrddin

So as long as there allowed to compete there’s not big problem? Then what are the israeli athletes here complaining about they were allowed to compete weren’t they?

Myrddin
Myrddin
7 years ago

No contention there! Only, I responded to your assertion that US creates visa problems for Iranians, not about being allowed to compete.
All international competition hosting rights come with a set of transparent rules, largely dictated by the financial sponsors and TV coverage. The host nation has no business cherry-picking those rules to suit its own agenda.
Sorry to ‘pick at the scab’ but Israel could qualify for WC2022, and their flags will come with them, Qataris, and Arab Nationals need to get their heads round that possibility?

Mohammed Albanai
Mohammed Albanai
7 years ago
Reply to  Myrddin

you didnt address the assertion you just said the iran won a medal, does winning mean you werent treated badly by the host nation? no scab picking here i have no issue with Israeli teams playing in qatar. although if you honestly think israel while playing in the European league has a chance at making it into the world cup then you dont watch enough football

Myrddin
Myrddin
7 years ago

OK, I’ll elaborate; the fact that there were Iranians there meant that they must have got visas? I don’t recall any newsworthy outcry about the US obstructing the visa process, perhaps you know differently, I am happy to be enlightened.

Few football fans would put money on little Northern Ireland qualifying for the World Cup finals, yet they have done it, in 1982, and through the European groups.

If you will allow me a couple of seconds of facetiousness; given the ability of Israel to manipulate massive events, if many voices in the Gulf region are to be believed, then Israel can simply make qualifying ‘happen’!

Mohammed Albanai
Mohammed Albanai
7 years ago
Reply to  Myrddin

i didnt say they didnt get them i said they were faced with much difficulty in getting them despite the fact there competing in an international event due to america “not liking iran” you wana put money on Israel qualifying? 100 thousand riyal says they wont
umm make it happen? its football what are they gona do get an american veto on every other country so they can qualify?

Myrddin
Myrddin
7 years ago

Read the last line of the first paragraph again, if you would be so kind!
About the bet (not that I would consider such an un-Islamic act :-)) try me again in about, say, 5 – 6 years, we might be on?
Veto?? No, no, no, I was thinking far more ‘cloak & dagger’ than that?

Mohammed Albanai
Mohammed Albanai
7 years ago
Reply to  Myrddin

im not exactly the most religious guy in the world 🙂 cloak and dagger in a football game, really dude you have to be a conspiracy nut to think like that. talk to you in a few years i hope you can put your money where your mouth is

Molten Metal
Molten Metal
7 years ago

You nailed it man.

Abdulrahman
Abdulrahman
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Awwww, but we want to. Why do you keep telling us we cannot eat our cake and keep it at the same time!

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  Abdulrahman

The cake is not yours though….

Qatari
Qatari
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

but we earned it :(((

braininstead
braininstead
7 years ago
Reply to  Qatari

there are rules on how to eat the cake…

Molten Metal
Molten Metal
7 years ago
Reply to  braininstead

Like in 2002 Salt lake Olympics?

HalfManArmy
HalfManArmy
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Yes it is. We “bought” it, remember?

DavidRSS8
DavidRSS8
7 years ago

How embarrassing for Qatar and the UAE at a time they are hoping to host more such events.

desertCard
desertCard
7 years ago
Reply to  DavidRSS8

From all that’s happened over the course of the last few months/years I’d say they have no shame.

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