On the Scene: Muju to Bring First Dialogue Between World Taekwondo, ITF

(ATR) World Taekwondo President Chungwon Choue says Muju 2017 affords time to speak with the ITF delegation.

(ATR) A lengthy International Taekwondo Federation exchange program could bring the first productive dialogue with World Taekwondo since 2014.

For the second time an ITF demonstration team will have a presence at the 2017 Taekwondo World Championships in Muju, South Korea. World Taekwondo President Chungwon Choue confirmed to Around the Rings the delegation is expected to stay for the championship’s duration, after only a brief appearance at the 2015 edition in Chelyabinsk, Russia.

Added significance has been placed on the delegation’s presence given the North Korea-led ITF and North Korean athletes. The athletes arrived in Seoul yesterday before travelling to Muju today, where they will stay until June 30. For reference, the 2015 exchange lasted for only one day Choue said.

Choue told ATR that there will be absolutely no talks of a future merge between the organizations. Originally, a joint press conference between Choue and ITF President Ung Chang was scheduled, but unexpectedly cancelled by the ITF.

South Korean President Jae In Moon is expected to participate in the championship’s opening ceremony, highlighting the sensitivity of the delegation’s visit.

Ha Jin Song, governor of North Jeolla Province, told journalists he believed the government delegation made the championships a "high profile event for Korea and beyond". Song confirmed that President of the National Assembly Sye Kyun Chun will also be in attendance, underscoring the national importance. Moon, a left-leaning politician, is known for wanting to take a softer stance with North Korea and will receive his first opportunity to engage Northern counterparts through sports diplomacyin Muju.

"This is very historic after since we invited the ITF demonstration two years ago and had a very successful launch of the program," Choue said to ATR. "[The ITF] are going to have their taekwondo championships in Pyongyang this September and we will discuss in more details [how] they are going to invite our demonstration teams to come to Pyongyang."

Choue hopes to build on and strengthen a 2014 set of accords signed by the two rival federations, acknowledging the "mutual respect" of each organization. The Nanjing accords also set guidelines that would allow ITF athletes to participate in World Taekwondo events, so long as it was under World Taekwondo rules. The accords allowed for reciprocity, meaning the participation of World Taekwondo athletes at ITF events would be expected.

"In 2015 we didn’t’ have any time to have a conversation," Choue added to the assembled journalists. "This time we have the ITF President, vice president, and spokesperson here in Korea, so I expect conversations between ITF and [World Taekwondo]."

Written by Aaron Bauer in Muju

Travel paid for by World Taekwondo

25 Years at #1: Your best source of news about the Olympics is AroundTheRings.com, for subscribers only.

Recent Articles

Torch relay for upcoming Beijing Games scaled back to three days due to COVID-19 fears

The relay will now take place February 2-4 and will be only in certain controlled areas

German court awards Brenna Huckaby an interim injunction, giving her a potential path towards inclusion at the Beijing 2022 Winter Paralympics

The door to Paralympic participation has been opened once more for adaptive snowboarder Brenna Huckaby, after a German court ruled to award her an interim injunction against the IPC’s decision to bar her from competing at the Beijing 2022 Winter Paralympics.

The Column: Osvaldo “Ozzie” Alonso, a Cuban soccer player who has made history in MLS after escaping from the national team 15 years ago

At 36, the player, now with Atlanta United, wants to win more titles. He recalls his adventures to the Around The Rings correspondent who witnessed his escape in the 2007 Gold Cup

LA COLUMNA : “Ozzie” Alonso un futbolista cubano que ha hecho historia en la MLS tras fugarse hace 15 años del equipo nacional

A los 36 años el jugador quiere conquistar más títulos ahora con el Atlanta United. Rememora su aventura al corresponsal de Around The Rings quien fue testigo de su escapada en la Copa Oro de 2007

El poder del buen periodismo: un artículo de la BBC fue clave para que el gobierno de Australia lograra expulsar a Novak Djokovic

En la disputa entre el gobierno de Canberra y los abogados del serbio fue decisivo un artículo publicado el 6 de enero por el servicio informativo de la BBC, la prestigiosa corporación británica de periodismo.