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London Olympics 2012: Israel Asks IOC To Honor Those Killed At 1972 Munich Games

By IAN DEITCH 04/24/12 03:27 PM ET AP

1972 Munich Olympic Massacre
The two West German border police helicopters that carried armed terrorists and their Israeli Olympian hostages, stand at Fuerstenfeldbruck air force base twenty miles west of Munich, Germany, on Sept. 7, 1972.

JERUSALEM — Israel asked the International Olympic Committee to honor the Israeli team members who were killed by Palestinian terrorists at the 1972 Munich Games.

Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon said Tuesday he has sent a letter to the IOC. He wants the London Olympics to open with a minute's silence honoring the 11 Israeli Olympic athletes and coaches slain by Palestinian terrorists. Israel is looking to draw attention to the attack as it marks the 40th anniversary this year.

Ayalon's letter came as Israel geared up for its annual Memorial Day, where the country remembers its fallen soldiers and victims of terrorism.

"We must remain vigilant against acts of hate and intolerance that stand in contrast to the ideals of the international Olympics," he wrote.

A copy of the letter was given to families of the athletes who were killed.

Efraim Zinger, secretary-general of Israel's Olympic Committee, said the IOC has ignored his request to hold an official memorial at the games, as it has in previous years. He said the Israeli delegation plans to observe a private ceremony, and that IOC President Jacques Rogge is expected to attend.

"The IOC has paid tribute to the memory of the athletes on several occasions and will continue to do so," IOC spokeswoman Emmanuelle Moreau said in an email to The Associated Press.

She did not say whether that would include a minute's silence at the games.

"The memory of the victims is not fading away," Moreau said. "One thing is certain: We will never forget."

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Filed by Chris Greenberg  |