Govt vows to re­solve sports cri­sis

Kuwait Times - - FRONT PAGE - By B Iz­zak

KUWAIT: The gov­ern­ment pledged yes­ter­day to re­solve the years-old sports cri­sis that led to in­ter­na­tional sanc­tions and vowed it will co­op­er­ate with the Na­tional As­sem­bly to is­sue new sports leg­is­la­tion, MPs said. The gov­ern­ment sub­mit­ted a two-point so­lu­tion aimed at lift­ing a 14month sus­pen­sion on Kuwaiti sports im­posed by the In­ter­na­tional Olympic Com­mit­tee (IOC) and the world foot­ball body FIFA for al­leged gov­ern­ment’s in­ter­fer­ence in lo­cal sports.

In a let­ter sent to the As­sem­bly yes­ter­day, the public sport au­thor­ity said it will is­sue a new sports law within six months that is in line with in­ter­na­tional sport char­ters and re­spects the coun­try’s sovereignty, the con­sti­tu­tion and public funds. In the se­cond point, the au­thor­ity said it will in­vite the IOC and FIFA to Kuwait to dis­cuss the sports sit­u­a­tion with the gov­ern­ment and the As­sem­bly in or­der to reach a so­lu­tion that is agreed by all sides.

The gov­ern­ment how­ever wants IOC and FIFA to lift the sus­pen­sion tem­po­rar­ily to al­low Kuwaiti ath­letes to par­tic­i­pate in in­ter­na­tional events. MP Ab­dul­wa­hab AlBab­tain said the pledge was sub­mit­ted yes­ter­day by Min­is­ter of In­for­ma­tion and Youth Sheikh Sal­man AlHu­moud Al-Sabah in a meet­ing with As­sem­bly Speaker Mar­zouq Al-Ghanem.

Bab­tain said on his Twit­ter ac­count that the min­is­ter said the Cabi­net ac­cepted a rec­om­men­da­tion passed by the As­sem­bly in its open­ing day call­ing on the gov­ern­ment to do what­ever is nec­es­sary to end the in­ter­na­tional sanc­tions. The law­maker said that based on the new de­vel­op­ments, there will be no need for the emer­gency ses­sion de­manded by op­po­si­tion MPs to­mor­row.

Bab­tain said the gov­ern­ment’s pledge will be sent to in­ter­na­tional sports or­ga­ni­za­tions in or­der for them to lift the sus­pen­sions on a tem­po­rary ba­sis un­til the new leg­is­la­tion is is­sued within the stip­u­lated six months. The law­maker said the As­sem­bly will co­op­er­ate with the gov­ern­ment, and warned that if it does not ful­fill its pledges, MPs will use their con­sti­tu­tional tools. As a re­sult of the in­ter­na­tional sanc­tions, Kuwaiti ath­letes were barred from tak­ing part in the Rio Olympics ear­lier this year un­der the Kuwait flag and par­tic­i­pated un­der the Olympic flag.

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