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WINDSURFING TEAM WITHDRAWN

Oman rejects Israeli request for bodyguards

JERUSALEM, October 7, 2015

Israel has withdrawn from the world windsurfing championships in Oman this month after failing to agree with the sultanate on security arrangements for its athletes, an Israeli official said on Wednesday.

An official with Israel's Shin Bet security service said the trip to the October 17-24 regatta was cancelled after Oman declined to allow Israeli bodyguards to escort the athletes.

"The Shin Bet invested great effort in trying to coordinate appropriate security arrangements" with Oman, the official said. "As these efforts did not succeed ... the Shin Bet was compelled to invoke the authority accorded it by the government of Israel and bar the delegation from departing to its destination."

Israel took the gold medal in windsurfing at the 2004 Summer Olympics and had been due to attend the regatta after clearing travel for its delegation to Oman.

In current International Sailing Federation rankings, Israel's female windsurfer Maayan Davidovich is ranked 10th in the world and male windsurfers Nimrod Mashiah and Shahr Tzubari, the Beijing Olympic bronze medalist, are ranked 25th and 26th respectively.  - Reuters




Tags: Oman | Israel |

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