World Sailing to Investigate Malaysia’s Denial of Israeli Visas
JNS.org – The Malaysian Organizing Authority of the Youth Sailing World Championship is under investigation after two Israeli windsurfers and their coach did not receive visas in time to compete at the Youth Sailing World Championships in Langkawi, Malaysia.
“World Sailing is committed to ensuring participation in our sport by competitors from all nations, and is taking this issue seriously,” President of World Sailing, Carlo Croce said in a statement released on Sunday. “A member of the World Sailing Executive is on route to Malaysia to investigate this issue and is seeking clarification from the Malaysian Organizing Authority.
“World Sailing expects the organizing authority of its events to allow sailors from all nations to compete on an equal basis. This expectation is made clear in the bid process and is set out in the contractual documentation governing our events.
The Israel Sailing Association informed World Sailing that windsurfers Yoav Omer and Noy Drihan and coach Meir Yaniv could not participate in the event because organizers said they could not compete under the Israeli flag or use any symbols affiliated with Israel.
Located in southeast Asia, Malaysia is a Muslim majority country that does not recognize Israel.
The Israeli windsurfers were allegedly told that if an Israeli won a gold medal, the Israeli national anthem would not be played. The team also did not receive their visas to travel to Malaysia.