Kuwait suspension lifted by IOC in time for Asian Games

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From Inside the Games

A ban on Kuwait has been lifted by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in time for them to compete under their own flag at the Asian Games, due to open here in the Indonesian capital on Saturday (August 18).

The Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) announced today the suspension had been lifted following a meeting today of the IOC’s ruling Executive Board.

The Kuwait Olympic Committee (KOC) was suspended on October 27 in 2015 due to Government interference and conflicts in the sports law.

A similar ban was lifted just before London 2012 for the same reason, allowing Kuwait to compete under the national flag.

Due to the ban, however, athletes from the country were forced to participate neutrally and under the IOC flag at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, where shooter Fehaid Al-Deehani won a gold medal as an Independent Olympic Athlete in the double trap.

The Kuwaiti delegation at these Games, being co-hosted by Jakarta and Palembang and due to last until September 2, will be led by the President of KOC, Sheikh Talal Fahd Al Sabah, and total 40 athletes and officials.

The decision to let Kuwait compete under its own flag will be welcomed by Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah, President of the OCA who is himself from that country.

Football’s world governing body FIFA had lifted its own ban on Kuwait last December so the country could take part in the Gulf Cup of Nations.

The Kuwait Government have worked hard in the last 18 months to amend its controversial sports law so it is line with the Olympic Charter.

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