Rogge confident Saudis will send women to London

By Stephen Wilson

Associated Press

Published: Monday, March 12 2012 9:20 a.m. MDT

FILE - This is a Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2012 file photo of International Olympic Committee President, Jacques Rogge as he speaks at the University of Southern California's Annenberg Institute of Sports, Media and Society in Los Angeles. Rogge said Monday March 12, 2012 that Saudi Arabia will be sending female athletes to the Olympics for the first time this summer.

Chris Carlson, FILE, Associated Press

Enlarge photo»

LAUSANNE, Switzerland — IOC President Jacques Rogge says he's optimistic that Saudi Arabia will send female athletes to the Olympics for the first time at this summer's London Games.

Rogge tells The Associated Press the IOC is in talks with Saudi Arabia on the "practicalities" of including women on its Olympic team.

Details of how many athletes and from which sport are still being worked out.

Rogge says a decision should be finalized within a month to six weeks, but "we are optimistic that this is going to happen."

Human Rights Watch recently accused Saudi Arabia of violating the IOC charter's pledge of equality.

Qatar and Brunei also have never included women in their Olympic teams. Qatar announced last month it would send female athletes to London.

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