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May 31, 2020

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September 9 - Denis Oswald has received a slap over the wrist for publicly criticising fellow International Olympic Committee (IOC) Presidential candidate Thomas Bach on the eve of the election here tomorrow.

The IOC Ethics Commission reminded Oswald of the rules of conduct after he had appeared on Swiss radio and hit out at the help Bach's campaign is receiving from Kuwait's Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah, President of the Association of National Olympic Committees.

Oswald told radio stations RTS that some IOC members had concerns about the alliance the two have formed.

"It is up to the members to make their choice," said the 66-year-old Oswald, who is considered the outsider in the six-man race to replace Jacques Rogge.

"Certain of them are annoyed by the agreements that have been struck between Kuwait and Bach...and also the pressure being brought to bear by the German political authorities, which one cannot ignore.

"Certain members believe that it is not really very democratic and that could have an opposite effect on Bach's election chances.

"I am no longer the age where I believe in Father Christmas."

Oswald was asked whether he planned to withdraw from the campaign.

"Certainly not in the case of Thomas Bach!" he told RTS.

"I don't believe he and I share the same values!

"What I hear...is he is implicated in commercial affairs.

"He uses his position to his benefit so that he can gain contracts for the companies he represents."

Bach, 59, claimed that he had not heard the remarks.

Earlier Bach had found himself the focus of old allegations made in a German television documentary and repeated in the British media about his time as a fencer - he was a member of the German team that won the Olympic gold medal at Montreal in 1976 - and working for Adidas.

A spokesman claimed the accusations were "nonsense".

Oswald later apologised for his remarks about Bach.

"Mr Oswald admitted that he said more than he had intended to and expressed his regrets to the IOC," a spokeswoman said.

Bach remains the frontrunner to be elected tomorrow with his closest challengers expected to be Singapore's Ser Miang Ng and Puerto Rico's Richard Carrion with Ukraine's Sergey Bubka and Taiwan's C K Wu also standing.

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