Iranian athletes to face Israelis at London Olympics

Iranian athletes to face Israelis at London Olympics

PanARMENIAN.Net - Iranian athletes will compete against Israelis at the London Olympics, according to the country’s chef de mission, the Associated Press reported.

Iran has been criticized in the past because some of its athletes withdrew from events against Israelis at the 2004 Athens Games and 2008 Beijing Games.

‘‘We will be truthful to sport,’’ said Bahram Afsharzadeh, who is also the secretary general of the Iranian Olympic committee said.

Afsharzadeh, who was at times speaking through a translator, also said his team had no plans to boycott events because of the nationality of opponents.

‘‘We just follow the sportsmanship and play every country,’’ Afsharzadeh said.

Afsharzadeh spoke in the athletes village after signing the ‘‘truce wall,’’ a UN-backed initiative calling on warring parties around the world to end hostilities during the period of the games.

‘‘In sport and in Olympics, all the countries must [be] together with the teams in friendship,’’ Afsharzadeh said in English.

‘‘Solidarity for all the countries is very important.’’

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