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    Armenia pulls out of World Championship citing tense political relations with Azerbaijan

    By indianshooting.com
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    Armenia has decided not to participate in the ISSF World Championship citing security concerns and tense political relations with the host country Azerbaijan.

    A six member Armenian team including the likes of Olympic quota winner Elmira Karapetyan had registered for the prestigious World Championship which kicks off in Baku tommorow.

    Tension has existed between Azerbaijan and Armenia for over 35 years with disputes escalating into military action, particularly over the Nagorno Karabakh region. More recently, there have been border skirmishes since 2021.

    ISSF secretary general Willi Grill insisted that any Armenian athlete who arrives in Baku would still be allowed to compete even though the deadline for entries had passed.

    “All of you know we are for the sport, it is our priority, we are not involved in any political or other things. We still have the door open for Armenia to participate even if the deadline is over,” said Grill on the eve of the ISSF World Championship.

    “Everybody in the world is here so if Armenian athletes are listening and it is possible to come here to participate, it would be again very very nice to be here altogether,” said Grill.

    “This Organising Committee did everything it was possible to do, there is no exception,” Grill insisted. Then it went in a direction where they wanted more guarantees, but all of you know, if somebody in the world ask you a guarantee for everything it does not exist. Nobody can guarantee everything in this world, you can do everything that is possible and this was done here, every possibility to guarantee safety or whatever,” said Grill.

    “I have come here so many years, never anything happened to me or anyone of our guests, so of course everybody has to decide by themselves. I understand also that the Government they donÔÇÖt feel well and that is another issue.” added Grill.