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Thank you IJF for doing the right thing...

I was pleasantly surprised today, when I saw this press release from the International Judo Federation (IJF). The IJF announced today that they were suspending two of the major events - the Tunis Grand Prix, and the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam - because of the way that Israeli Judoka have been treated when playing in those events over the last several years.

In the past few years, when playing at these events, Israeli Judoka have been treated unfairly. For example - at both of these events, they weren't allowed to compete under the Israeli flag, and had to remove all flag patches from their uniforms. When they medaled (and they did) instead of the Israeli National Anthem being played, they played the 'IJF' national anthem. Beyond that, the host countries have also played several games with their visas, and forced them into interrogrations by police upon arrival.

Last year, in Abu Dhabi, Mariusz Viser, the IJF Chairman, met with the organizers of the Abu Dhabi event, who promised to rectify the situation. Viser gave both the Emiratis and the Tunisians a deadline, which they didn't meet, so now their tournaments have been suspended.

Not only that, but I read in the Israeli Press (in Hebrew) this week that a Grand Prix is on its way to Tel-Aviv in 2019. The IJF decided to award the GP tournament to Israel following the success of the European Judo Championships held in Tel-Aviv this past April

Thank you IJF and Mr. Viser for doing the right thing.

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