World Para-swimming Championships: London to host after Malaysia stripped of event

WATCH: Malaysia minister defends Israeli athletes ban

London will host the rearranged 2019 World Para-swimming Championships in September.

The event was due to be held in Malaysia from 29 July but the nation was stripped of the hosting rights for refusing to let Israelis compete.

Malaysia, which is a majority Muslim country, banned the athletes because of what Kuala Lumpur sees as Israel's poor treatment of Palestinians.

The event will take place at the London Aquatics Centre from 9-15 September.

"I cannot thank the Mayor of London, UK Sport and British Swimming enough for their outstanding efforts stepping in to stage and support this Championships, a key Tokyo 2020 qualifier, at such short notice," said International Paralympic Committee (IPC) president Andrew Parsons.

"I have no doubt the whole of the Para-swimming community will be appreciative of the efforts they have made to organise this competition.

"We appreciate that the dates are not identical to the ones we had originally planned in Malaysia and these new dates will have an impact on the performance programmes of Para-swimmers.

"However, following the cancellation of Malaysia and the opening of a new bidding process it simply was not feasible to organise a new event for the end of July and early August."

About 600 athletes from 60 countries are expected to race at London 2019, which comes just four years after Great Britain last hosted the World Para-swimming Championships in Glasgow.

London 2019 will be the first time a global Para-swimming competition has been held at the London Aquatics Centre since the 2012 Paralympics, and will be a key qualification competition for the Tokyo Paralympics next year.

"It will be the first time I get to experience a home crowd at a major event, so having everyone behind me is something I'm really looking forward to," said Great Britain's 2016 Paralympic gold medallist Ellie Robinson.

"I think the World Championships and Europeans between the Paralympics are really important because they enable you to get ready for the next Games. To know we have one that will be run smoothly is comforting to know."

Great Britain's Alice Tai, a double Paralympic medallist from Rio 2016, added: "For me it's absolutely insane and I'm so excited to have a home World Championships because all of my family and friends can all come and watch and that support will make a real difference.

"Having won in Glasgow [2015], standing on the top of the podium and having the whole crowd sing the national anthem with you, that's one of the most special moments ever, so hopefully that can be recreated."

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