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HOME  > Past issues  > 2013 April 24 - May 7  > Inose’s remarks insulting Islamic culture trample on Olympic spirit
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2013 April 24 - May 7 [TOKYO]

Inose’s remarks insulting Islamic culture trample on Olympic spirit

April 30, 2013
Tokyo Governor Inose Naoki, who serves as the chair of the Tokyo Olympics Bid Committee for the 2020 Summer Games, insulted the rival city of Istanbul.

In an interview with the New York Times on April 26, Inose referred to Istanbul, one of the rival bidders for the games. According to the article, he said, “But Islamic countries, the only thing they share in common is Allah and they are fighting with each other, and they have classes.” He reportedly added that if the Turkish people want to live longer, they should learn from Japan’s culture.

The Rules of Conduct of the International Olympic Committee requires all bidders to refrain from any act or comment likely to tarnish the image of a rival city.

The spirit of the Olympics is to promote friendship and deepen mutual understanding beyond ethnic and cultural differences. Inose’s comments go against the spirit as well as violate the IOC rules.

When the governor submitted a bid to the IOC in January, he said that a developing country has only to follow the lead of an advanced nation. This remark indicates his contempt for developing countries.

The Tokyo Olympics Bid Committee often mentions the 2012 London Olympics as its model. Inose should learn more about the importance of the Olympics held in London, one of the most multi-cultural cities in the world.
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