Ethiopia’s Haile calls New York Times story a “disgrace”

By benim
In East Africa
Nov 19th, 2010

Ethiopia’s Olympic champion athlete Haile Gebreselassie said the New York Times newspaper’s journalists must have their own agenda to fabricate stories about his situation in Ethiopia.

The current Marathon record holder, Haile had earlier reversed his decision to retire from professional running, during his visit to western Ethiopian region of Wollega in Oromia state. His manager Jos Hermens spoke with several media outlets regarding Haile’s decision to un-retire and said the athlete’s U-turn was because he faces “a lot of pressure” in Ethiopia.

However, the New York Times decided to connect Hermens’ statement with another unconfirmed story by an anti-government Ethiopian website that claimed Ethiopian Prime Minister’s wife Azeb Mesfin is allegedly blackmailing the athlete Haile Grebreselassie.

In an interview on Ethiopian TV, Jos Hermens said the pressure he mentioned was about Haile’s busy life with his international running and large business projects around the country. “The sentence on New York Times that claimed to quote me is not from me” said Hermens. “They are just trying to use other people for their own agenda,” added Haile about New York Times.

“It is a disgrace that belittles the credibility of a major newspaper like New York Times,” Haile said.
According to reports, Haile is planning to run in the Tokyo marathon in February.

– Jimma Times

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