The Palestinian Authority Sports Authority has condemned the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain as “shameful” for their participation in the international Giro d’Italia bike race that for the first time this weeks was held in Israel.
All of the cyclists on the Gulf states teams were naturalized citizens, according to a tweet quoted by the Al Araby news network. The two nations were among 22 teams that competed in the Grand Tour, the first time the competition was held outside Europe.
The “Palestine Olympic Committee” said in a statement on Sunday that the two Gulf states committed “high treason” with their participation in the race.
“This sets a very dangerous precedent that reaches the level of high treason to the struggles of the Palestinian people and their sacrifices,” the statement said. “The committee condemns in the strongest terms the shameful participation of Emirati and Bahraini cyclists in the race.”