KUWAIT: The government pledged yesterday to resolve the years-old sport crisis that led to international sanctions and vowed it will cooperate with the National Assembly to issue new sports legislation, MPs said. The government submitted a two-point solution aimed at lifting a 14-month suspension on Kuwaiti sports imposed by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the world football body FIFA for alleged government’s interference in local sports.
In a letter sent to the Assembly yesterday, the public sport authority said it will issue a new sports law within six months that is in line with international sport charters and respects the country’s sovereignty, the constitution and public funds. In the second point, the authority said it will invite the IOC and FIFA to Kuwait to discuss the sports situation with the government and the Assembly in order to reach a solution that is agreed by all sides.
The government however wants IOC and FIFA to lift the suspension temporarily to allow Kuwaiti athletes to participate in international events. MP Abdulwahab Al-Babtain said the pledge was submitted yesterday by Minister of Information and Youth Sheikh Salman Al-Humoud Al-Sabah in a meeting with Assembly Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanem.
Babtain said on his Twitter account that the minister said the Cabinet accepted a recommendation passed by the Assembly in its opening day calling on the government to do whatever is necessary to end the international sanctions. The lawmaker said that based on the new developments, there will be no need for the emergency session demanded by opposition MPs tomorrow.
Babtain said the government’s pledge will be sent to international sports organizations in order for them to lift the suspensions on a temporary basis until the new legislation is issued within the stipulated six months. The lawmaker said the Assembly will cooperate with the government, and warned that if it does not fulfill its pledges, MPs will use their constitutional tools. As a result of the international sanctions, Kuwaiti athletes were barred from taking part in the Rio Olympics earlier this year under the Kuwait flag and participated under the Olympic flag.