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  • Bach Tours Arab Region; Amateur Sports Ban in Greece -- NOCs News


    Bach Visits Gulf Region

    Bach met with Saudi Arabian officials in Riyadh. (Getty Images)
    IOC president Thomas Bach followed up the 63rd annual ANOC Executive Council meeting with a four-day tour of the Gulf States.

    Bach finished his tour on Wednesday with a visit to Saudi Arabia and a conversation with Prince Nawaf Faisal Fahd Bin Abdulaziz, the president of the Saudi Arabia Olympic Committee and an IOC member.

    The two leaders discussed a strategy for the development of sport in the Kingdom until 2020, which would include proposals to increase women’s participation in the Olympic Games and in sport in general.

    President Bach promised full support of the plan.

    The day prior, Bach travelled to Qatar and met with Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani, the president of Qatar’s Olympic Committee and an IOC member. The two discussed the possibility of Qatar hosting the 2022 FIFA World Cup and Qatar’s Olympic Schools Programme. 

    According to, President Bach praised Qatar’s “many good initiatives” and urged the country to contribute to Olympic Agenda 2020.

    Greece Proposes Amateur Sports Ban

    (Getty Images)
    The Greek Olympic Committee (HOC) has suggested that all amateur sports suspend operations for April 12th and 13th.

    The suspension would be in protest to state funding being cut in half, which has left many federations struggling to survive.

    “The recommendation [of suspension] represents a first measure to show our stance against the continued inaction and indifference shown by the state towards the country’s youth which risks being deprived of such an important social good as sport,” the HOC said in a statement released on Monday.

    It is up to the amateur sports to decide if they want to participate in the ban. Greek athletes participating in international competition will be excluded from the protest.

    Written by Andrew Murrell.

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