Wrestling, taekwondo joins SportAccord exodus

Mon May 11, 2015 1:03pm EDT
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By Karolos Grohmann

MUNICH (Reuters) - The international wrestling federation (UWW) and the world taekwondo federations (WTF) on Monday pulled out of the sports umbrella organization SportAccord until relations improve following a row with the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

"Our decision, which is based on our full commitment to the Olympic Movement and its leadership, implies that for the time being, United World Wrestling shall refrain to participate in the activities and games organized by SportAccord, until the relations with ASOIF has improved to the latter’s satisfaction," UWW President Nenad Lalovic said in a statement.

The Association of Summer Olympic International Federations (ASOIF) has suspended links with SportAccord after its President Marius Vizer's scathing attack on the IOC last month.

"This was a difficult decision, in particular as we have worked closely with SportAccord in the past to secure additional opportunities for wrestling and traditional wrestling," Lalovic said.

"I sincerely hope that the crisis within SportAccord can be resolved soon, in the best interest of sport."

The WTF also joined the string of departures following a board meeting on Monday.

"After consultation with the WTF members, the WTF Council has unanimously decided to suspend the WTF’s membership with SportAccord with immediate effect," WTF President Chungwon Choue said.

"It is with regret that taekwondo will not participate in the World Combat Games. However, we will continue to promote taekwondo and the Olympic values around the world and develop our sport for our athletes and our millions of fans worldwide.   Continued...

Nenad Lalovic, International Federation of Associated Wrestling Styles President, listens to a question during a news conference in Buenos Aires September 6, 2013. REUTERS/Martin Acosta