Taichung to appeal axeing of East Asian Youth Games

The Taiwanese city of Taichung has said it will appeal a decision by the East Asian Olympic Committees (EAOC) to strip its hosting rights to the 2019 East Asian Youth Games.

Taichung Mayor Lin Chia-lung told state news agency CNA that the city will submit the petition after consulting with the Sports Administration and the Chinese Taipei Olympic Committee.

The EAOC terminated the host city contract on Wednesday, one day after an extraordinary council meeting in Beijing voted to cancel the staging of the Games.

The vote is said to have been called for by China’s representative due to an ongoing campaign for a proposed referendum in Taiwan for the nation to take part in future international sporting events under the name of Taiwan rather than Chinese Taipei. The latter designation has been used and approved by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) since 1981.

Lin has said the appeal is based on four arguments. Firstly, that the cancellation violates the spirit of the Olympic Charter to promote sporting events in East Asia. Secondly, Lin said it had no knowledge of Tuesday’s vote or the regulations it is said to have breached.

The third factor being cited in the appeal is that Taichung officials were not present at the Beijing meeting to state their case, while finally the EAOC is not said to have provided official reasons for the cancellation.

“We will side with the athletes and defend their rights in line with the Olympic spirit,” Lin said, adding that Taichung will seek support from other EAOC members after submitting the petition.

The Games were due to take place in August next year and Taichung is already reported to have spent NT$676m (€18.9m/$22.2m) on preparations.