South Korea's Park to receive London 2012 Olympic bronze
Wednesday, 31 October 2012
October 31 - Park Jong-Woo, the South Korean footballer who sparked a diplomatic row with Japan at London 2012 by waving a political placard and was subsequently banned from the medal ceremony, is finally set to receive his Olympic bronze.
Park (pictured top) has been sent a certificate confirming he will receive his medal, according to the Korea Football Association (KFA), which has always backed the player.
Park held up a sign saying "Dokdo is our territory" referring to a territorial dispute between South Korea and Japan while celebrating his team's 2-0 win over their fierce rivals in the Olympic bronze medal match at Wembley Stadium.
Park was handed the sign by a fan and excluded from the medal ceremony after the final.
His actions, which he has always claimed were not planned, prompted FIFA to open disciplinary proceedings against him.
A meeting of FIFA's Disciplinary Committee on October 5 failed to determine whether Park violated regulations banning political, religious or racial statements.
FIFA has still not reached a decision but the International Olympic Committee (IOC), via the local Olympic committee, now appears to have stepped in to end the dispute.
"The Korean Olympic Committee (KOC) handed over certificates to the KFA on Tuesday," a KFA spokesman was quoted as saying.
"Park Jong-Woo's certificate was included."
The KFA described Park's act as "impulsive" but stopped short of apologising to their Japanese counterparts.
The disputed islands, controlled by South Korea but also claimed by Japan, lie equidistant from the two countries and are believed to contain frozen natural gas deposits potentially worth billions of dollars.
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September 2012: Olympic bad boy Park earns shot at redemption with South Korea national football side
August 2012: Let Park receive his Olympic medal, insists South Korean coach