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Israel bans fencing team from competing in Qatar

Semi-finals of the 2013 World Fencing Championships [Marie-Lan Nguyen/Wikimedia Commons]
Semi-finals of the 2013 World Fencing Championships in Budapest on 10 August 2013 [Marie-Lan Nguyen/Wikimedia Commons]

The Israeli fencing team has been banned from travelling to Qatar to compete as a result of the security threat posed by Iran, media sources have said.

National broadcaster Kan wrote on Twitter: “The union received clear directions not to travel to Qatar, in addition to the fact that we did not have visas from Doha.”

Haaretz reported yesterday that the Israeli security agency Shin Bet issued a directive warning of a “heightened threat level in the Gulf region”.

It a statement, the Israeli Culture and Sports Ministry said: “Due to the Shin Bet’s assessment of the situation following recent events in our region, the threat level in the Gulf has been raised.”

 Israeli sources: ‘Tel Aviv uses UAE to spy on Qatar, Iran and Hezbollah’

“In light of this, the Shin Bet has forbidden delegations from the region out of security concerns.”

AS  the order applies only to teams, individual members of Israel’s delegation may still compete.

The Fencing Grand Prix du Qatar 2019 is due to take place at the Aspire Zone in Doha from 25-27 January.

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