by Olorunwa Lawal
Wrestling’s governing body (FILA) has called on Uzbekistan to allow athletes from Ebola-hit countries to compete at next month’s world wrestling championships, the Interfax news agency reported on Monday.
“Wrestling’s international ruling body has sent a letter to the country’s Ministry of Public Health asking it to allow the athletes from the Ebola-hit countries to participate in the championships at Tashkent,” the agency quoted an anonymous ministry representative as saying.
He added that the final decision on the case will be announced later this week.
Interfax said that seven wrestlers from Nigeria and two athletes from Sierra Leone have indicated their desire to compete at the world championships in the Uzbeki capital from September 8-14.
The health department official said that Uzbekistan is taking all possible measures to prevent the penetration of the deadly Ebola virus into the country.
The UN health agency said the death toll from the worst outbreak of Ebola in four decades had now climbed to 1,145 in Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria and Sierra Leone.
Last week athletes from Ebola-hit countries in west Africa were barred from competing in some sports at the Youth Olympics, which got underway in China at the weekend, because of Ebola fears.