— Published 30 April 2021

Iran suspended for four years

New episode in the soap opera of Iranian judoka Saeid Mollaei, forced by his federation to lose a match at the 2019 Worlds, in order to avoid meeting an Israeli opponent. The International Judo Federation (IJF) has decided to strike hard by pronouncing the four-year suspension of the Iranian federation. The body, chaired by Marius Vizer, announced it on its website, explaining that the Saeid Mollaei case was not isolated. Iran is sanctioned for “repeated and serious violations” of the IJF statutes and the values ​​of Olympism. The IJF had previously issued a sanction against the Iranian Judo Federation in the same case, but it was lifted by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). The disciplinary commission of the IJF therefore took up the case. To finally decide to withdraw Iran’s status as a member country, as of September 18th, 2019, for a period of four years. It will not concern Saeid Mollaei. The Iranian judoka has decided to leave his home country after an international tournament in 2019 in Tokyo. He now wears the colours of Mongolia, and is expected to compete in the Tokyo Games for his adopted country.