The Armenian Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sports has said Azerbaijan’s decision to withdraw from the European Championships in Yerevan is a “matter of concern from the point of view of sports ethics.”
“From the very beginning, the Republic of Armenia ensured all safety standards, and there have been no problem related to the safety of the weightlifters who arrived in Yerevan to participate in the championships and there could not have been any,” the Ministry said in a statement.
“The incident that happened during the opening ceremony, which was resolved very quickly, has nothing to do with the safety of the athletes and ensuring their normal competitions. All necessary conditions were fully provided,” it added.
“The Republic of Armenia remains committed to fulfilling its commitments to the International Weightlifting Federation and reaffirms its readiness to hold the 2023 European Championships at a high level,” the Ministry cocluded.
Azerbaijan’s Ministry of Sports and the National Olympic Committee said in a joint statement that the Azerbaijani athletes would not participate in the event after the country’s flag was burnt during the opening ceremony on Friday.