(COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO.) – AIBA, the international association for amateur boxing, has lifted its suspension of USA Boxing and has confirmed that all boxing activity is free to proceed. Following direct communication between AIBA and USA Boxing, AIBA agreed to lift the suspension against athletes and members immediately.
“We are extremely grateful to AIBA for their willingness to lift the suspension and allow our athletes to participate in all boxing events so quickly,” said Dr. Charles Butler, President, USA Boxing. “The athletes across the country were the biggest victims of this suspension and we wanted to ensure that the mistakes of the organization’s past leadership have as little impact on them as possible. Dr. Wu agreed with us, lifted the suspension, and expressed strong support to protect our athletes and the membership of USA Boxing.”
“Our local boxing gyms and grassroots events are critical to USA Boxing’s athletes and coaches in not only building future champions but also creating stronger younger men and women,” said Anthony Bartkowski, Executive Director, USA Boxing. “It is imperative that all the local clubs have the ability to train our youth from the beginnings of their careers through the highest of international events. This decision will ensure continued access of our boxers to all competitions throughout the world.”
The suspension, which was a direct result of the negative and controversial public statements made by former USA Boxing President Hal Adonis, was initially scheduled to run through January 19, 2013. After receiving the ruling of AIBA’s Disciplinary Commission on Wednesday, Dr. Butler contacted AIBA President Dr. C.K. Wu and Executive Director Ho Kim to appeal on behalf of the athletes.
The AIBA Disciplinary Commission’s ruling stated that Adonis’ public comments were extremely harmful to women’s boxing and amateur boxing throughout the world and necessitated a severe sanction. The commission found that by failing to remove Adonis from the USA Boxing Board when the opportunity was presented, the organization endorsed his statements. Therefore, the panel imposed the initial three-month suspension on USA Boxing, which has now been lifted.
As of October 19, 2012, Adonis is suspended from all national and international levels of USA Boxing and is therefore no longer a member of the USA Boxing Board of Directors, nor can he have involvement in any USA Boxing activities during his two-year suspension.