Malaysians stand firm on Israel ban

THE Malaysian government says that any Israeli athletes who try to compete in the 2019 World Para Swimming Championships will be committing “an offence”.

The Malaysian Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has reiterated that the Israeli Paralympics team will not be allowed to compete in Kuching from July 29 to August 4.

“If they want to withdraw the championships’ hosting rights from Malaysia, then they can try to do so,” he said on Wednesday.

Participation in the championships is vital for qualification into the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games.

Israel and Malaysia currently have no diplomatic relations.

The Malaysian PM labelled Jews as “hook-nosed” in October and condemned Israel for creating chaos in the Middle East.

Israeli Olympic Committee chairman Nisim Sasportas said: “We are continuing to apply pressure.

“We have letters of support from the International Paralympics Committee, the European Paralympics Committee and the Olympic Athletes Committee, and hope that they allow the athletes and their security entourage to participate.”

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