Support Irish Karate Athletes' entry to Olympic Qualification Events before it's too late

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After months of dispute internally within Irish Karate, senior athletes are now being stopped from pursuing their Olympic Dream. On 15th February a letter from ONAKAI (the self claimed governing body for karate) was sent to several of Ireland’s fighters threatening to withdraw them from competing at qualification events. They were given 24 hours to leave their clubs, coaches and governing body behind or else they will be stopped from competing. Only last week, junior athletes from the same clubs were given permission to compete, so this turn of events has caused shock and appears to be a tactic to pressurise athletes to switch their loyalty. 

Over the past number of months, athletes have endured intimidation, blackmail and unreasonable demands from this group of administrators and managers who are operating without the support of Sport Ireland or the Olympic Federation of Ireland. Without this support, they do not have any adequate child protection procedures, transparent policies for selection nor are they in any way making strides to abide by basic governance codes. Many of the athletes therefore feel they cannot join this organisation as to do so would condone this method of operating. 

Sport Ireland and the Minister for Sport have been made aware of the escalating dispute on numerous occasions and their stance is that they cannot do anything more to intervene. The World Karate Federation has ignored numerous requests to intervene and continue to support this breakaway organisation. 

Please sign this petition to support Irish Karate Athletes in their bid to represent Ireland on the biggest stage and stop this political warfare that uses athletes as leverage.