IOC blocks ISU's Korean Air deal

Wed, 03 Nov 19:46:00 2010

The International Olympic Committee forced Korean Air to delay a deal with the International Skating Union after ruling it presented a conflict of interest for Pyeongchang's 2018 Winter Games bid.

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It also issued a warning to the South Korean bid leader to stick to the rules.

The IOC last week launched an investigation into the agreement with the ISU by Korean Airlines as well as a deal involving Korean electronics firm Samsung with the international rowing federation, FISA, saying they could present a conflict of interest.

The heads of both federations are IOC members and are eligible to vote in next year's 2018 Games host city election.

FISA chief Denis Oswald is also a member of the powerful IOC Executive Board.

Germany's Munich and France's Annecy are also in the running with a decision to be taken on July 6, 2011, in Durban, South Africa during the IOC Session.

"The ISU and Korean Air - a partner of the Pyeongchang 2018 bid committee - have agreed to postpone their partnership until after the vote on who will host the Olympic Winter Games in 2018," the IOC said in a statement.

"The Ethics Commission reminded Pyeongchang 2018 and its related organisations to fully respect the rules of conduct related to candidate cities and issued a warning."

The IOC said Samsung's deal with FISA did not infringe IOC rules.

"FISA president and IOC member Denis Oswald decided to abstain from voting in Durban to avoid a perception of conflict of interests. The IOC ethics commission recognised that FISA and its president acted in good faith," it said.

Samsung is also a top Olympic sponsor and its chairman Lee Kun-hee was reinstated as an IOC member in February after receiving a presidential pardon following a three-year sentence for tax evasion.

Pyeongchang had said at the time Lee would help land the 2018 Winter Games after the South Korean resort narrowly lost to Vancouver and Russia's Sochi for the 2010 and 2014 Games in their previous two attempts.


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