Israelis Uneasy About Ban of Taiwan Team from 1976 Olympics

Many Israelis were uneasy and some angered today-over what amounts to the ouster of the 42-member Taiwan team from the Olympic Games due to start in Montreal July 17. These feelings stem from sympathy for a country being ostracized from an international event for purely political reasons–a humiliation suffered by Israel on more than one occasion in the past. But the main concern is that the ban on Taiwan would set a precedent for a similar ban on the Israeli team in the 1980 Olympics which will be held in Moscow.

The Israeli government has made no official expression of displeasure over the treatment of the Taiwanese and is not expected to. To become officially embroiled in the matter would only offend Canada, a friendly nation with which Israel maintains diplomatic and trade relations.

Israel has no diplomatic relations with Taiwan. But if Canada can block the team from Taiwan, with which it severed relations in 1970 when it recognized the People’s Republic of China, the Soviet Union, it was felt here, could easily do the same against Israel with which it broke relations in 1967. The Russians may not challenge the name “Israel” but may simply say that a “Palestinian” team was a more appropriate representative of this particular land, sources here said.

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