European Shooting President Endorses Sitting ISSF Chief

(ATR) Vladimir Lisin says candidate Sheikh Salman "has been inactive in the life of the ISSF."

NANJING, CHINA - AUGUST 22:  Fernanda Russo of Argentina checks her rifle while Jose Santos Valdes Martinez of Mexico aims during the 10m Air Rifle Mixed International Teams Gold Medal Competition at the Fangshan Shooting Hall during Day 6 of the Nanjing 2014 Summer Youth Olympic Games on August 22, 2014 in Nanjing, China.  (Photo by Stanley Chou/Getty Images)
NANJING, CHINA - AUGUST 22: Fernanda Russo of Argentina checks her rifle while Jose Santos Valdes Martinez of Mexico aims during the 10m Air Rifle Mixed International Teams Gold Medal Competition at the Fangshan Shooting Hall during Day 6 of the Nanjing 2014 Summer Youth Olympic Games on August 22, 2014 in Nanjing, China. (Photo by Stanley Chou/Getty Images)

(ATR) The president of the European Shooting Confederation has thrown his support behind the sitting International Shooting Sports Federation president Olegario Vazquez Raña ahead of Wednesday’s election.

The ISSF General Assembly is underway in Munich, and ESC president Vladimir Lisin says he will be voting for Raña while running for ISSF vice president.

He also cautions against voting for Raña's opposition: Sheikh Salman S. S. H. Al-Sabah.

Lisin calls the candidacy of Sheikh Salman, the current head of the Asian Shooting Configuration, a "big surprise" and says the sheikh informed many in ISSF last year that governmental obligations would keep him from fully participating in the shooting world.

"It is notable that Sheikh Salman … has indeed been inactive in the life of the ISSF of late," said Lisin. "In 2014, for example, he did not attend the 2nd Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing [or] the ISSF World Championship in Granada - two of the biggest events of the shooting sports calendar."

Sheikh Salman could not immediately be reached for comment.

Lisin says the sheikh mailed out a letter asking for support during the assembly.

"Whilst reading that circular, it personally struck me as strange to hear calls for change coming from a man who, throughout all of his tenure in senior ISSF positions, has never before made a critical remark against the current ISSF president … nor has he suggested a single fundamentally new idea concerning the activities of the ISSF.

"It also strikes me as strange that before making such a crucial move, Sheikh Salman S.S.H. Al Sabah did not consult with the presidents of the other continental confederations whilst in his letter he calls at the same time for more unified team work."

Lisin goes on to say he hopes to see changes in rules and regulations, event construction, equipment and ammunition control, competition formats, and TV coverage.

He finishes by saying he agrees with IOC president Thomas Bach in his quest to implement Olympic Agenda 2020 reforms "not when the weight of problems becomes socially dangerous and the organization has to feverishly find the way out of the crisis, but when it is in good shape and can quietly think about progression."

The ISSF will hold elections during its general assembly session on Wednesday.

Written by Nick Devlin

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