IOC: Iranian athlete’s withdrawal was not political


By Play the Game
Speculations that politics were the real reason behind an Iranian taekwondo finalist’s withdrawal from a YOG final are now being dismissed by the IOC.

Iranian taekwondo fighter Mohammad Soleimani withdrew from the 48kg boys' taekwondo final against Israeli Gili Haimovitz at the Youth Olympic Games in Singapore on Sunday.

Israeli officials claimed that the Iranian's withdrawal was in fact politically motivated and not caused by the cited injury. Iran refuses to recognise Israel as a country and has a policy not to compete against Israel.

After the allegations, the IOC demanded an examination by an independent doctor who stated that Soleimani was indeed suffering from an ankle injury.

"There is nothing to continue," IOC Director of Communications Mark Adams said according to, "It was an injury."

Iran has previously pulled out from competitions against Israeli athletes at sporting events, including the Beijing Olympics in 2008.



* required field

What is three plus seven?

Guidelines for posting
Play the Game promotes an open debate on sport and sports politics and we strongly encourage everyone to participate in the discussions on But please follow these simple guidelines when you write a post:

  1. Please be respectful - even if you disagree strongly with certain viewpoints. Slanderous or profane remarks will not be posted.
  2. Please keep to the subject. Spam or solicitations of any kind will not be posted.

Use of cookies

The website uses cookies to provide a user-friendly and relevant website. Cookies provide information about how the website is being used or support special functions such as Twitter feeds. 

By continuing to use this site, you consent to the use of cookies. You can find out more about our use of cookies and personal data in our privacy policy.