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Anti-israel Sentiment at Meeting of Basketball Association in Munich

December 1, 1976
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Anti-Israel sentiment in sport, once again, reared its ugly head over the weekend at the meeting of the Federation of International Basketball Associations conducted at Munich, Germany to determine sites and dates for the final European Cup playoffs involving six teams, including Maccabi Tel, Aviv

At the sessions in Munich the six teams in attendance, comprised of CSK of the Soviet Union, Real Madrid of Spain, Mobil Girgi of Italy, Maccabi Tel Aviv, Spartak Brno of Czechoslovakia and Racing Mailines of Belgium, conferred to complete arrangements for the Cup finals.

When it came to a discussion of sites, the CSK and Spartak Brno teams immediately protested playing Israel in Tel Aviv and instead forfeited their respective games to the Israeli five. The return games between Israel and these Soviet and Czechoslovak quintets will be played Feb. 15 and 19 in Antwerp, Belgium, an unusual procedure.

In former years, when a team reaching the finals in European Cup play refused to go through with a home-and-home game commitment, the team was immediately dropped from the competition and furthermore was suspended from European Cup participation the following year. Apparently the new executive secretary, Boris Stankovic of Yugoslavia, a friend of this writer who is sympathetic to Israel, was fearful of repercussions back home in the event he arbitrarily suspended the Soviet and Czechoslovakian fives from Cup play next year.

It will be interesting to note the reaction of the International Olympic Committee concerning the stand taken by the Iron Curtain basketball teams in view of the fact that the 1980 World Olympics are slated for the USSR.

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