About 30 Italians were present at the ceremony, including Italy’s Minister of Sport, the heads of the Italian Olympic Committee and athletes. Israeli Olympic Committee head Tzvi Varshaviak and Olympic delegation leader Efraim Zinger also took part.
It is actions like these that represent the Olympic spirit so missing in the International Olympic Committee decision. With deep gratitude and tears in my eyes, I thank the Italian team for their incredible gesture. I wish them many medals, but have to be honest and say that nothing they could possibly win will show more about the kinds of athletes and people they are, than this simple gesture.