Kuwait agrees to change sports laws

Updated: July 28, 2009, 4:02 PM ET
Associated Press

LAUSANNE, Switzerland -- The IOC lifted a threat to suspend Kuwait from the Olympics on Tuesday after its government made good on a promise to begin changing its sports laws.

The International Olympic Committee said it was satisfied that a July 20 decision by the Kuwaiti Council of Ministers meant new laws would be created to protect the independence of sports federations in the Gulf state.

"We are very pleased that the Kuwaiti authorities are showing their willingness to implement satisfactory measures in order to avoid the suspension of the Kuwait Olympic Committee," Pere Miro, director of the IOC's department for national relations, said in a statement.

Kuwait's laws breach the Olympic Charter by allowing politicians to interfere with elections of sports organizations.

The IOC executive board warned Kuwait in June, and IOC president Jacques Rogge led a meeting between the parties two weeks ago. Kuwait was then given until the end of the year to change its laws, on condition the process started by the end of July.

The IOC reminded Kuwait on Tuesday that the Dec. 31 target will not be extended and offered "technical assistance" to meet its deadline.


Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press