Lifestyle & Belief

IOC President rejects calls for a minute of silence for victims of 1972 Munich massacre


The flame will finish its journey in the Olympic Stadium in London on July 27, where it will burn throughout the Games.


Julian Finney

International Olympic Committee President Jacques Rogge is standing firm. There will no be a minute of silence to mark the 40th anniversary of the killing of 11 Israeli nationals at the Munich Olympics, he said Saturday.

“We feel that the opening ceremony is an atmosphere that is not fit to remember such a tragic incident,” Rogge said of the proposed commemoration of the 1972 attack by Palestinian gunmen, the Associated Press reported.

In 1972, members of the Black September Palestinian terror group killed 11 Israeli nationals during the Munich Olympics. Five of the terrorists and one German policeman were also killed

The IOC has come under pressure from politicians in countries including the United States, Germany, and Israel who have have asked the Olympic Committee to reconsider incorporating a minute of silence into the opening ceremony.

President Barack Obama also supports the campaign for a minute’s silence, White House National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor told Yahoo News in an email Friday. 

Rogge said the IOC will honor them at a reception in London during the games on Aug. 6. IOC officials will also attend a ceremony in Germany on the anniversary of the attack on Sept. 5 at the military airfield of Furstenfeldbruck where most of the Israelis died.

"We are going to pay a homage to the athletes, of course, as we always have done in the past and will do in the future," said Rogge. Rogge himself competed in yachting at the 1972 Olympics, the AFP reported.