The head of the Lebanese Olympic delegation has been told by the International Olympic Committee that they won’t tolerate another situation where they refuse to allow Israeli athletes to board a bus which is meant for the two countries to share.
Israeli sailing coach Udi Gal took to Facebook to voice his disgust at the incident prior to Friday night’s opening ceremony where the Lebanese refused to allow Israeli athletes to get on the bus to take them to the Maracana stadium.
The IOC committee held a hearing on Sunday, where they told Salim al-Haj Nakoula the head of the Lebanese delegation, that they wouldn’t accept another such occurance.
Al-Haj Nakoula had said the incident was a ‘misunderstanding’, but then told a Lebanese newspaper that he was allowed to prevent another team boarding a bus that was reserved for his country’s athletes. He told An-Nahar: “I asked the bus driver to close the door but the guide with the Israeli team prevented him from doing so, I then stood at the door of the bus to prevent the Israel team from entering and some of them tried to go in and pick up a fight.”
However, another source from the Lebanese Olympic committee told Lebanese television station Al Mayadeen that the decision not to allow the Israelis on the bus was a group decision of the Lebanese Olympic delegation.
Another source added Lebanese athletes are “committed to the national position in refusing to be in the same place as the Israelis.”