February 22, 2024

The Israel Olympic Committee President, Yael Arad, stated that the rise in antisemitic acts around the world during the Gaza war has set new security challenges for Israeli athletes gearing up for the Paris 2024 Olympics. Arad mentioned that some Israeli athletes had faced obstacles in participating in competitions and expressed concerns over their safety. Israel’s artistic swimming team even decided not to travel to competitions, including Olympic qualifiers in Qatar, due to safety fears. However, Arad assured that the Israeli Olympic team members were not involved in any military activity and were solely devoted to representing Israel at the Olympics. She also mentioned that the committee is dedicated to ensuring the safety and security of the athletes. The Paris Games organizers and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) have also emphasized the importance of security for the upcoming event, with the Paris Games security budget standing at 320 million euros. The IOC spokesperson expressed full confidence in the ability of the Organizing Committee and the French authorities to deliver safe and successful Games. The Gaza war has led to a rise in antisemitic and Islamophobic incidents in the US and Europe, with advocacy groups reporting an increase in violent assaults and online harassment. France recorded a significant increase in antisemitic acts since the start of the war.