Rio de Janeiro: Egypt`s Islam El Shehaby on Friday created a controversy at the Rio Olympics after he refused to shake hands with his Israeli opponent Or Sasson post their judo match.
The 32-year-old had been reportedly pressured by his fans and followers on social media not to not compete in the match against the Israeli as it would shame Islam.
Egypt was the first Arab power to make peace with Israel, in 1979, but the treaty remains unpopular among many Egyptians.
The two Judokas however did not comment after the match inside the Carioca Arena 2.
Israeli Olympic spokeswoman Brurya Bigman declined to answer questions on the judo incident, saying the problem lay with El Shehaby. Sasson will compete in the semi-finals of the +100kg category later on Friday.
The judoka`s brother told Israel`s Channel 10 that Sasson was focussed professionally and tactically on the competition. The incident with the Egyptian did not appear to involve any personal animosity, he added.
"This is something driven perhaps by the Egyptian people, by the Egyptian regime, but it does not look to me like something personal," he said.
(With Agency inputs)