Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

DEBATE

Algeria: What's the Choice? Incumbent Bouteflika Votes in Wheelchair

Read more

WEB NEWS

Nigerian web users call for end to violence

Read more

FOCUS

Bitcoin in the US: A monetary revolution?

Read more

ENCORE!

Fast cars and slow trains

Read more

WEB NEWS

Chile: online mobilization to help Valparaiso fire victims

Read more

FACE-OFF

François Hollande: France's most unpopular president

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Mansouria Mokhefi, Middle East and North Africa specialist

Read more

LIFESTYLES

Sustainable cuisine

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Google Was Making A Space Elevator And A Hoverboard, But Couldn't Get Them To Work

Read more

  • French troops free five aid workers kidnapped in Mali by Islamists

    Read more

  • Russia and West agree on steps to ease Ukraine crisis

    Read more

  • With a strong French presence, veterans and fresh faces, Cannes aims to please

    Read more

  • Low turnout in Algerian election tipped to return Bouteflika

    Read more

  • After cup defeat, Spanish pundits read last rites for Barcelona

    Read more

  • Frantic search for survivors of sunken South Korea ferry

    Read more

  • India heads to polls in single largest day of voting

    Read more

  • Ukraine talks open in Geneva as Putin talks tough on TV

    Read more

  • Pro-Russian separatists killed in attack on Black Sea base

    Read more

  • Man executed in Texas for 2002 triple murder

    Read more

  • Scandal-hit French doctor Jacques Servier dies at 92

    Read more

  • Belgian head of wildlife reserve shot in DR Congo

    Read more

  • Crunch talks on Ukraine begin in Geneva

    Read more

  • Stagehand of God? Maradona's legendary goal inspires a play

    Read more

  • US rolls out red carpet for French critic of capitalism

    Read more

  • N. Korea not amused by London hair salon's Kim Jong-un ad

    Read more

  • Real Madrid beat old foes Barcelona to lift Copa del Rey

    Read more

  • France's new PM targets welfare in drive to cut spending

    Read more

  • Campaigning against Bouteflika's re-election... in France

    Read more

  • Brazil club Mineiro cancel Anelka signing after no-show

    Read more

  • Syria 'torture' photos silence UN Security Council members

    Read more

  • Paris laboratory loses deadly SARS virus samples

    Read more

  • More than 100 schoolgirls kidnapped in northeast Nigeria

    Read more

  • New York police disband unit targeting Muslims

    Read more

  • 'Miracle girl' healthy after seven-organ transplant in Paris

    Read more

Sport

British PM commemorates Munich Olympics massacre

©

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-08-07

British Prime Minister David Cameron paid homage Monday to the Israeli athletes killed 40 years ago in a terrorist attack at the 1972 Olympics in Munich. The 11 athletes were taken hostage by Black September, a Palestinian militant group.

AP - Britain’s prime minister and top Olympic officials gathered Monday to mark the 40th anniversary of the deaths of 11 Israeli athletes in a terrorist attack at the 1972 Munich Olympics – a quiet moment on the sidelines of the London Games.

Still, the memorial promised to be bittersweet for the families of the slain athletes, many of whom have campaigned for decades for a moment of silence during the games’ opening ceremony.

Their demands were again rejected this year, despite personal appeals by widows Ankie Spitzer and Ilana Romano to Jacques Rogge, the head of the International Olympic Committee.

Rogge held an impromptu moment of silence at the athletes village during the London Games, but has otherwise insisted that the memorial, held in London’s medieval Guildhall, is the appropriate way to honor the dead.

British Prime Minister David Cameron led the tributes, appealing to the mourners to remember the 11 dead as fathers, husbands and athletes who did nothing more than represent their country in sport.

“As the world comes together in London to celebrate the games and the values it represents, it is right that we should stop and remember the 11 Israeli athletes who so tragically lost their lives when those values came under attack in Munich 40 years ago,” he said. “It was a truly shocking act of evil. A crime against the Jewish people. A crime against humanity. A crime the world must never forget.”

Munich’s 1972 Olympics were meant to right an historical wrong. They were the first held in Germany since the 1936 Berlin Olympics, which were tainted by images of Nazism. But the Black September Palestinian militant group penetrated the laxly secured athletes village and took Israeli team members hostage. Eleven died at the village or in a botched rescue attempt.

The games were briefly suspended, but the Olympics were forever changed.

Security costs soared and kept rising with every games.

The families have carried their grief, asking that the sacrifices of their fathers, brothers and sons be noted at the Olympics, the celebration of peace, brotherhood and sport in which they died.

The IOC says the opening ceremony is not an appropriate arena to remember the dead, despite pressure from politicians in the United States, Israel and Germany. A committee started by a Jewish organization in Rockland, New York, has gathered more than 100,000 signatures for the moment of silence and counts President Barack Obama among its supporters.

The families flatly reject the official reasons they’ve been given over the years for why this cannot happen. At Montreal, they said they were told the reason was that the Arabs would leave. At Barcelona, it was unwillingness to bring politics to the games. At Atlanta, the reason was protocol. At Athens, organizers said it was not the appropriate time.

Cameron said Britain, too, had suffered at the hands of terrorists, recalling the transit attacks on July 7, 2005, that killed 52 commuters the day after Britain won the Olympics.

Cameron noted that Britain’s “euphoria at winning the right to host these Olympics was brutally shattered within just 24 hours” by the bombings.

“But our two countries, Britain and Israel, share the same determination to fight terrorism and to ensure that these evil deeds will never win,” he told the audience.

“Seven years on from 7/7, I am proud that as we speak, this great city of London, probably the most diverse city in the world, is hosting athletes from 204 nations. And I am delighted that a strong Israeli team is among them,'' he added.

 

Date created : 2012-08-06

Comments

COMMENT(S)