Malaysian cyclist could face disciplinary action after 'Save Gaza' gloves protest

Azizulhasni Awang has qualified for the men's sprint quarter-final today but is at risk of disciplinary action

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The Independent Online

A Malaysian cyclist is facing an investigation and possible disciplinary action after he was caught with the words “Save Gaza” printed on his gloves while competing at the Commonwealth Games on Thursday.

Azizulhasni Awang, 26, was competing in the men’s sprint at the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome when he lifted up his hands to the BBC cameras to show the word “Save” on his right hand and “Gaza” on his left.

However, now Commonwealth Games officials are investigating the incident and the result could see Awang stripped of his accreditation or potentially lose his place at the games.

Like the Olympics, the Commonwealth Games is against any aspect of the competition being used for political means or to communicate any political messages.

A spokesman for the Commonwealth Games Federation, told the Press Association that any decision on Awang's future would not be made until a proper investigation had taken place.

Speaking to the press agency about possible disciplinary action, he said: “We want to find out the facts in the first instance."

Adding: “We have asked the Malaysian chef de mission for a report so we can obtain the facts.”

The performance by Awang on Thursday saw him qualify for the quarter-finals of the men’s sprint on Friday. Awang is a real medal hopeful for Malaysia, a country that has yet to pick up a gold at the Games.

Back home in Malaysia Awang has been labelled a hero by some supporters. Following the glove protest, the Angkatan Belia Islam Malaysia (ABIM) a Malaysian Islamic youth NGO said Awang was a "hero of humanity" who had shown tremendous courage.

Additional Reporting AP