US/World News

Israeli windsurfers quit world tourney in Malaysia

(JTA) — Two Israeli windsurfers and their coach withdrew from the ISAF world youth sailing championships in Malaysia after they did not receive visas to travel there. Israel and Malaysia do not have diplomatic relations. The championships began Sunday and run through Jan. 3. Last year in Poland, the two Israelis — Yoav Omer and Noy Drihan — each took home gold medals. Israel Sailing Association chairman Amir Gill told The Jerusalem Post that he and the two competitors had been offered conditional visas to compete in the championships. Among the terms, he said, were that the Israeli windsurfers could not compete under the Israeli flag, wear any symbols associated with Israel and have Israel’s national anthem played if they won the gold medal. Israel’s sailing association, along with the Olympic Committee of Israel, is considering a lawsuit against World Sailing.

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