Olympics: Egyptian booed for not shaking hands with Israeli after judo match

Israel's Or Sasson (left) competes with Egypt's Islam El Shehaby.
Israel's Or Sasson (left) competes with Egypt's Islam El Shehaby.PHOTO: AFP

RIO DE JANEIRO (REUTERS) - Egypt's Islam El Shehaby refused to shake hands with Israel's Or Sasson after their judo match at the Rio Games on Friday (Aug 12), drawing boos from the crowd at the Carioca Arena 2.

El Shehaby, 32, had been reportedly pressured by fans in social media not to show up for his scheduled fight with his Israeli opponent because it would shame Islam, but he decided not to withdraw from the match.

After Sasson had defeated El Shehaby and the two retook their places in front of the referee, Sasson bowed and approached El Shehaby to shake his hand but the Egyptian backed away.

El Shehaby and Sasson did not comment after the match.

Nicolas Messner, a spokesman for the International Judo Federation, said in fact judokas are not obligated to shake hands under IJF rules, only to bow, which El Shehaby did after he was called back.

"Nevertheless, after the Games the situation will be studied and analysed to see if further action must be taken," he told Reuters.

Sasson will compete in the semi-finals of the +100kg category later on Friday.