Authorities in the Netherlands have refused to allow North Korea’s team to compete in the 14th World Military Women’s Soccer Championship, the DPRK said on Monday.
“Recently, an unusual situation occurred in which the Dutch government refused to issue entry visas to our team, which was scheduled to participate in the 14th World Armed Forces Women’s Football Championship, without any justifiable reason,” the DPRK Football Association said in a statement through its spokesperson on Monday, “and we strongly condemn it.”
“This is a very severe act that contradicts the fundamental principles of the Olympic Movement to eradicate discrimination in sports and allow athletes from all countries and regions to participate in international sports events on an equal basis, as well as the motto of the International Military Sports Council, ‘Goodwill through sports,'” the DPRK Football Association said.
“We strongly condemn the Netherlands’ generous measures to unfairly prevent our athletes from participating in international competitions as an act of political hostility,” the association said, stressing that the politicization of sport cannot be justified on any grounds.
The association urged the International Military Sports Council to “seriously reflect on the gravity of the unusual situation that has arisen and to address the actions deployed to ensure the healthy development, independence and depoliticization of physical education.”
The association said it “does not feel the need to participate in the 14th World Armed Forces Women’s Football Championship” as a result of the incident and “will therefore not be sending a team.”
The World Military Women’s Football Championship is scheduled to be held in the Netherlands next month from July 27 to July 9.
North Korea has refused to participate in international sporting events since 2020, citing the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), but has recently made direct and indirect indications of its intention to participate in various international events 메이저사이트.
North Korea is expected to send athletes to the first edition of the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) Grand Prix in Cuba early next month and the Asian Games (AG) in Hangzhou, China, in September.