16 Facts About Maccabiah Games


The Maccabiah Games are open to Jewish athletes from around the world, and to all Israeli citizens regardless of their religion.

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The Maccabiah Games were declared a "Regional Sports Event" by, and under the auspices and supervision of, the International Olympic Committee in 1961.

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Maccabiah Games are open to Jewish athletes from around the world, as well as to all Israeli athletes regardless of ethnicity or religion.

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Name Maccabiah Games was chosen after Judah Maccabee, a Jewish leader who defended his country from King Antiochus.

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Maccabiah Games were the result of a proposal put forward by Yosef Yekutieli in 1929 at the Maccabi World Congress.

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Maccabiah Games were intended to take place at an interval of three years.

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The 3rd Maccabiah Games, which was scheduled for spring of 1938, was postponed until 1950 due to British concerns of large-scale illegal immigration, World War II, and the 1948 Arab–Israeli War.

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The 2nd Winter Maccabiah Games took place February 18 to 22,1936, in Banska Bystrica.

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Maccabiah Games recognize all 28 current Olympic sports, plus a number of other sports such as chess, cricket, and netball.

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In contrast with the Olympic Games and other major international sporting events, the Maccabiah rules regarding accepting new sports are very lenient.

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New sports are accepted to the Maccabiah Games provided that competitions will only take place if at least four delegations bring competitors for that sport.

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Maccabiah Games are organized into four divisions: Open, Junior, Masters, and Paralympics.

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The 19th Maccabiah Games was granted provisional approval for dressage and jumping competitions from the FEI.

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Athletes who have competed in the Maccabiah Games include many Olympic gold medalists, world champions, and world record holders.

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Maccabiah Games have grown into one of the world's largest sporting events, with 85 participating countries in the current edition of the Maccabiah.

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Iran, a Muslim, but not Arab country, which debuted at the 7th Maccabiah Games, stopped participating following the Iranian Revolution.

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