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Iran's Judo Star Seeking Asylum In Germany After Pressure Not To Compete With An Israeli

Georgia's Luka Maisuradze (in white) celebrates winning the bronze medal in his fight against Iran's Saeid Mollaei in the men's under 81kg category during the 2019 Judo World Championships.

The hero of Iranian judo whose recent loss to a Georgian in world competitions was dubbed as the biggest surprise in judo in 2019 has requested asylum in Germany.

Saeid Mollaei lost a match in obvious indifference not to face an Israeli judoka in world competitions in Tokyo in August, based on a rule in the Islamic Republic banning competition between Iranian and Israeli athletes.

The International Judo Federation has confirmed the news about his asylum request and voiced support for Mollaei.

This week, world Bronze medalist in Judo, Mohammad Mohammadi Barimanlou decided to retire sincehe had to face an Israeli judoka in the current international judo championship.

Last March, another Iranian judoka Mohammad Abbas Nejad pulled out of the Tbilisi 2018 Grand Prix to avoid facing Israeli athlete Yarin Mnagid in the 66 kilogram weight category.

The same has been happening in international Olympic type wrestling matches and both Iranian players, coaches and international sports officials have been putting pressure on the Islamic Republic to abandon its discriminatory policy violating basic principles of international sports.