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November 23, 2021 5:15 pm

Israeli Squash Team Plans to Fight Ban From World Championship in Malaysia

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avatar by i24 News and Algemeiner Staff

Squash rackets and balls. Photo: Public domain

i24 News – Israel’s Squash Association (ISA) plans to fight the World Squash Federation (WSF) in the Court of Arbitration for Sport if it does not allow Israeli players to take part in the world championship next month in Malaysia.

Set for Dec. 7, the Men’s World Team Squash Championship was moved from New Zealand to Malaysia due to COVID-19 restrictions.

However, Israel and Malaysia currently do not have formal diplomatic relations, and Israelis are not able to visit the Southeast Asian country. Malaysian passports bear the inscription, “This passport is valid for all countries except Israel.”

The Squash Racquets Association of Malaysia (SRAM) ignored the ISA when it inquired about the possibility of receiving special visas so its players could attend, The Jerusalem Post reported on Tuesday.

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In response to WSF president Zena Wooldridge’s inquiry on the matter, the SRAM stated that Israelis would not be allowed to participate.

“As you may be aware, there are, sadly, long-standing sensitivities surrounding the Israel-Palestine conflict,” SRAM president Gerard Monteiro said.

He added that Malaysia “would not be able to guarantee [Israeli players’] safety and well-being,” according to the Post.

Wooldridge told ISA that she has not found a way to enable Israelis to attend the championship in Malaysia’s capital Kuala Lumpur.

ISA chairman Aviv Bushinsky wrote to WSF CEO William Louis-Marie on Oct. 5, expressing the Israeli team’s disappointment.

“We are explicitly being discriminated against, and therefore, unable to participate,” he wrote, the Post reported.

Bushinsky further suggested moving the championship to Israel or to have the opportunity to host the event in the next two years.

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