Spain must recognize the Kosovar Olympic Committee

Spain must recognize the Kosovar Olympic Committee

The Catalan bid to organize the 2030 Winter Olympics, between the Pyrenees and Barcelona, ​​continues to work on the project, which will soon open its headquarters, pending the talks between the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the Spanish Committee. "We are calm, there will be agreement," they say from the candidacy after seeing how the IOC stretched their ears in Spain, recommending to the different international federations not to grant in Spain the organization of sporting events until it resolves the participation full right of Kosovo. Spain is one of the few European states that do not recognize Kosovo and therefore does not recognize its right to participate in international competitions.

The IOC's reaction came after the Karate World Cup disputed in Madrid, when the organizers did not allow the Kosovars to compete under their banner. Instead, they had to compete with the flag of the International Karate Federation (WKF), as it appeared in the bookmarks. Yes, they could instead wear their uniforms with the KKF abbreviations, which identify the Kosovar federation. Kosovo, a majority of Albanian territory in Serbia, became unilaterally independent in 2008 after a war and years of violence, and achieved the recognition of most of the international community. Spain, however, did not do so, considering that states that are born of a unilateral declaration can not be recognized. Serbia and Kosovo are currently holding talks to advance recognition, which could happen through an exchange of territories, to allow Serbian-majority Kosovo areas to become part of Serbia.

Joan Antoni Samaranch, Vice President of the IOC, spoke yesterday about this fact, and made it clear that "in the Olympic chart there is the defense of athletes." "It's enough that they have suffered in Kosovo with a war, because now politicians do not let their athletes compete. From a political point of view a country can be recognized or not, but it is necessary to find solutions to protect athletes. It's an issue that has to be talked about with Spain, "he added. The president of the Higher Sports Council, María José Rienda, said, on the other hand: "We know that the problem exists, but the government is working with Foreigners and we have been solving the problems step by step." The case, in fact, is already in Moncloa, where it will approach a path that recognizes the Kosovar Olympic Committee at a sports level, without the government of Madrid having to recognize the state. A road, though, complicated. According to the president of the Spanish Olympic Committee (COE), Alejandro Blanco, "we need to find a point of agreement halfway that allows all Kosovar athletes to compete without touching the idea, thinking or decision taken by the Spanish government" .

The IOC has received complaints from the Kosovars as well as from other Olympic committees, which has caused this statement that obliges the Spanish Olympic Committee to rethink its strategy if it wants to bring Olympic Games in the coming years in its territory.

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