Why a German company rejects an Israeli order

The German manufacturer of sports balls for the visually impaired, KSG GmbH, no longer wants to deliver products to Israel until further notice. The background is the war in Gaza. The Israeli Paralympic Committee (IPC) confirmed this to the FAZ. In a letter from the company based in Bad Essen, Lower Saxony, which is available to the FAZ, it says that KSG decided to take this step “due to the ongoing conflict in the region”.

The decision is in line with the manufacturer’s commitment to “promote peace and stability in the affected region”. The termination of trade relations with the Israelis is necessary to preserve the company’s principles “and to support efforts to find a peaceful solution to the conflict.”

The company KSG, which says it sells around 3,000 of its balls worldwide every year, will monitor the situation and further developments in the region and, if necessary, re-evaluate the decision at a later date. A FAZ request to the company for a statement initially remained unanswered.

Purchase only possible via detours

“As before, our dealer in Jerusalem wanted to buy 50 goal balls for our blind people so that they can continue to do sports,” said a spokeswoman for the IPC in an interview with the FAZ. “Now we have to buy the balls via a detour and for 25 percent Pay more.” An official response from the IPC said the “refusal undermines not only the values ​​we uphold, but also the very essence of sportsmanship and sets a worrying precedent that will impact other sports and across our national borders could go out.”

Alexander Davydov Published/Updated: Recommendations: 8 Alexander Davydov, Amman/Tel Aviv Published/Updated: Recommendations: 2 Alexander Davydov Published/Updated: Recommendations: 5

In goalball, players with visual impairments try to throw a special bell ball into the opponent’s goal. Developed in 1946 as a rehabilitation measure for blind war invalids by the Austrian Hans Lorenzen and the German Sepp Reindle, goalball has been a Paralympic discipline since 1976 and is now considered one of the most popular sports among people with visual impairments. Israel’s women’s team has qualified for the Paralympic Games in Paris.

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