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Iran Gets Four-Year Judo Ban for Ordering Athletes to Avoid Israelis

Judo’s world body issued a four-year ban against the Iranian Judo Federation over Tehran’s demands that its athletes refuse to face Israeli opponents.

The ban was backdated to begin in September 2019, when Iranian judoka and former world champion Saeid Mollaei left the Iranian team during the World Championship in Tokyo, saying he was ordered to throw matches and withdraw from competitions to avoid facing Israeli competitors.

The International Judo Federation initially responded to the Iranian order with an open-ended ban on Iran’s team participating in international judo competitions. That initial ban was overturned in March by the Court of Arbitration for Sport. (TOI / VFI News)