Ronda Rousey Defends WWE’s Saudi Arabia Event Following Khashoggi Killing Controversy
The wrestling superstar said that canceling the event would be "the wrong move."
Despite mounting pressure on the WWE to pull its upcoming Crown Jewel event from Saudia Arabia in the wake of the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the country’s Istanbul consulate, Ronda Rousey says the entertainment company should stand firm.
An Olympian with international experience, Rousey told TMZ she thinks the event in Riyadh should proceed because it is an opportunity for fans “to be able to share our cultures.”
She also said pulling out of the Crown Jewel would be the wrong move.
“I’m a two-time Olympian, so I’m an idealist when it comes to sports,” Rousey said. “I think that sports is where we really find that common ground with each other. And, I think that pulling out of the Crown Jewel would be the wrong move because I think that this is an opportunity to be able to share our cultures, and to define what we have in common and in times especially when, you know, times of adversity between two countries that’s the absolute wrong time to be able to pull away. I think that’s the time for us to be able to find what we have in common and be able to understand each other more.”
She also said that if the event is a huge success and the WWE takes off in Saudi Arabia, it may pave the way for women being allowed to compete in the country.
For its part, the WWE has said the event will take place on November 2 as planned.
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