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Palestinian kickboxer refuses to compete against Israeli opponent in finals to 'prevent normalisation with Israel' Open in fullscreen

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Palestinian kickboxer refuses to compete against Israeli opponent in finals to 'prevent normalisation with Israel'

Palestinian boxer Sultan Abu al-Hajj [Facebook]

Date of publication: 10 August, 2017

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Sultan Abu al-Hajj is being hailed in Palestine for upholding the decision to boycott the fight during the World Youth Championship in Thailand.
A Palestinian kickboxer refused to compete against his Israeli opponent during the World Youth Championship in Thailand.

Sultan Abu al-Hajj, a Ramallah athlete, was set to fight against Amit Madah in the finals, but the Palestinian athlete declined the match under grounds that the Palestinian Association of Kickboxing and Muay Thai (PAKM) had not yet made an official decision over whether to face Israeli athletes in any sporting events. 

Al-Hajj stressed that he respected the choice of the boycott, and although this was the first time he had left Palestine for a sporting competition, he was content with his multiple medals from local matches.

Al-Hajj was hailed for his decision in Palestine and joins a number of Palestinians who have come out in opposition of “normalisation” with Israelis.

Many say that agreeing to participate in events alongside Israelis, even if non-political, contributes to erasing the Palestinian trauma caused by decades of Israeli violations of human rights.

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