Iranian and US wrestlers shake hands
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US, Russian and Iranian wrestlers rumble in New York

The United Nations played host to a different group of power players when champion wrestlers from the US, Russia and Iran visited its headquarters in New York.

There may be tensions between the political leaders of the three countries, but the athletes have formed an unlikely alliance to save wrestling as an Olympic sport.

As part of a campaign to push the International Olympic Committee to reverse its decision to drop wrestling from the 2020 Games, the wrestlers were invited to an event at the UN in Manhattan on Tuesday.

They will put on a series of wrestling matches at Grand Central Terminal on Wednesday, which organisers have billed as the "rumble on the rails".

The BBC's Bahman Kalbasi talked to some of the wrestlers about the significance of the sport in their countries and why they believe it could be a way to improve relations beyond sport.

Produced by Anna Bressanin and Andrew Blum

  • 15 May 2013