Tue, 10 Dec 2019

The head of world amateur boxing's governing body (AIBA) -- Uzbek businessman and alleged drug trafficker Gafur Rakhimov -- has resigned from the post after his tenure played a role in AIBA being stripped of the right to organize Olympic boxing events.

In his statement issued on July 15, Rakhimov explained his decision to resign by the necessity 'to be constantly present in legal and other proceedings in order to speed up the clearing of my name.'

'This most difficult transitional period in the history of AIBA coincides, unfortunately, with a period of my growing involvement in the processes aimed at protecting my honor and dignity against politically motivated and false accusations originating from the past,' Rakhimov wrote.

In November 2018, Rakhimov won 86 of the 134 valid votes at the AIBA congress in Moscow to beat his only opponent, former boxer Serik Konakbaev of Kazakhstan.

However, Rakhimov is on a U.S. Treasury Department sanctions list for alleged links to international heroin trafficking. The sanctions bar U.S. citizens and companies from doing business with him. Rakhimov denies any wrongdoing.

The International Olympic Committee also criticized Rakhimov's bid to become head of AIBA over controversial judging at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

Rakhimov stepped aside from the presidency in March but continued to formally hold office while a new interim president, Mohamed Moustahsane, took over the running of AIBA.

Copyright (c) 2018. RFE/RL, Inc. Republished with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036

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