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Thomas Bach: IOC shows how two-state solution works

Israel-Palestinian conflict

Thomas Bach once again has an idea for
Thomas Bach once again has an idea for

Thomas Bach: IOC shows how two-state solution works

Following Hamas' terrorist attack on Israel, the region is in a state of war. It is unclear what a peaceful solution could look like. Now IOC boss Thomas Bach is speaking out and citing his organization as a role model for the path to a "two-state solution".

In the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians, IOC President Thomas Bach recommends his organization as an example of possible paths to a peaceful solution. The 30-year parallel membership of both nations in the International Olympic Committee since the recognition of the Palestinian Olympic Committee (POC) is "proof that a two-state solution can be possible", said Bach in Paris at a conference with representatives of former host cities for the Olympic Games.

"In dealing with the situation between Israel and Palestine, we have an advantage because both belong to the Olympic Movement, which in the political world would be called the 'two-state solution'," Bach explained his view at the event to prepare for the 2024 Summer Games in France's capital. In doing so, the German ring leader expressly referred to the stability of this constellation: "Two National Olympic Committees have lived in peaceful coexistence for decades."

The POC has been recognized by the IOC since 1993. A delegation from the organization took part in the Olympic Games for the first time in Atlanta in 1996. Most recently, five athletes competed under the Palestinian flag in Olympic competitions during the 2021 Summer Games in Tokyo. Bach emphasized the opportunities for direct exchange with both Israeli representatives and Palestinian officials within the secure IOC framework. "We have the opportunity to talk to both sides," said Bach, adding that they have "direct contacts" with the national Olympic committees in Israel and on the Palestinian side.

In fact, the IOC has long been one step ahead of the United Nations (UN) thanks to the equal membership of Israel's national Olympic organization and the Palestinian Olympians. Palestine has only had "observer state" status in the UN for eleven years.