skip to content
16 Jun 2009
IOC News , Press Release

The IOC takes action against the NOC of Kuwait

The Executive Board of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) decided today to suspend the National Olympic Committee (NOC) of Kuwait, effective 1 August 2009, in order to protect the Olympic Movement in Kuwait from interference by the Kuwaiti public authorities.
This deferred suspension allows time for the public authorities responsible for sport in Kuwait to amend a national sports law currently in force that is not compatible with the principles and rules of the Olympic Movement. The law prevents the NOC and the Kuwaiti Olympic Movement as a whole from complying with the principle of autonomy of sports organisations as set out in the Olympic Charter.
The IOC, together with the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) and the Kuwait Olympic Committee, has tried for nearly two years to find an appropriate and concerted solution with the local and government authorities in Kuwait. However, the IOC was informed that the government authorities were not in a position to respect their commitments within the set deadline.

Consequently, on the basis of the provision of the Olympic Charter (Rule 28.9 in particular), and in order to protect the Olympic Movement in Kuwait, the IOC Executive Board ruled as follows:
The Kuwait Olympic Committee will be suspended on 1 August 2009 if, by 31 July 2009 at midnight (CET), the process of amending the local law is not duly finalised, as per the agreements signed and the written commitment from the Kuwaiti authorities.

“It is critical that this situation is resolved as soon as possible for the sake of sport, and in particular the Kuwaiti athletes,” said Pere Miró, Director of the IOC’s Department of NOC Relations “I am hopeful that satisfactory measures will be put into place before the 31 July deadline in order to avoid the implementation of such a sanction.”


Rule 28.9 of the Olympic Charter states that “the IOC Executive Board may take any appropriate decisions for the protection of the Olympic Movement in the country of an NOC, including suspension of or withdrawal of recognition from such NOC if the constitution, law or other regulations in force in the country concerned, or any act by any governmental or other body, causes the activity of the NOC or the making or expression of its will to be hampered.”


The mission of the IOC is to promote Olympism throughout the world and to lead the Olympic Movement. The Olympic Charter states that NOCs must preserve their autonomy and resist pressure of any kind — including, but not limited to, political, legal, religious or economic pressures — which may prevent them from complying with the Olympic Charter.

To view and download photos on, please click here 


To download broadcast quality videos from the AFPTV Video Forum, please click here
Login: IOC - Password: MEDIA2009


For further information, please contact the IOC Communications Department, Tel: +41 21 621 60 00, email:
back to top