Turkish kung fu fighter Akyuz faces probe over support for Palestine

'I am proud of myself for the inconvenience I caused, I do not regret it' says Akyuz

09:42 - 1/05/2024 Wednesday
File photo
File photo

Continental Europe's federation for wushu kung fu announced an investigation on Tuesday into a Turkish martial artist over a display of support for Palestine during the European Wushu Kungfu Championship.

The championship, organized by the Wushu Kungfu Federation of Europe (WKFE), was held in December 2023 in Istanbul.

Necmettin Erbakan Akyuz, who holds six championships in the martial art, displayed a Palestinian flag after being presented with the European Championship gold medal during the award ceremony.

"Political displays were reported during the prize-giving ceremonies, reportedly initiated by individual members associated with the TWF (Turkish Wushu Kung Fu Federation). Immediate measures were taken on-site, including personal meetings and official protests, to strongly contest these occurrences. Such actions do not align with our values and standards within the WKFE community," read a statement by the WKFE.

It added that an internal investigation was launched to "examine these incidents, seeking clarity and understanding thoroughly. This inquiry aims to identify any shortcomings and enable the implementation of necessary measures. The findings will be consolidated into a comprehensive report."

In response to the investigation, Akyuz said, "I am proud of myself for the inconvenience I caused, I do not regret it, and if I have the opportunity, I will do it again."

"You can punish me, you can take away my championships. I don't care, I did it by risking the end of my sports career," he asserted.

Israel has waged a brutal offensive on Gaza since a cross-border attack by the Palestinian group Hamas on Oct. 7 last year, which Tel Aviv says killed nearly 1,200 people.

Nearly 34,500 Palestinians have since been killed, mostly women and children, and over 77,600 others injured amid mass destruction and severe shortages of necessities.

#Necmettin Erbakan Akyuz
#Wushu Kungfu Federation of Europe
2 months ago