"Stronger Together" will be the theme of the 2020 World Judo Day ©IJF

The International Judo Federation (IJF) has revealed that "Stronger Together" – in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and racism felt across the globe – will be the theme of World Judo Day in 2020.

It follows the success of the 2019 edition which led to the planting of more than 6,000 trees on five continents, with the theme focused on the environment.

Now, the 2020 edition on October 28 will aim to bring the judo community together, biting back against the ongoing pandemic and the recent racism and discrimination controversies.

"It is true that cautious gestures are necessary to avoid infections, it is true that confinement and isolation are remedies in the absence of a vaccine, but together we are always better and we will always be stronger if we are able to respect one another," the IJF said.

"There are widely used phrases such as 'union is strength', however, in some contexts it may not have been demonstrated.

"It is not a trivial thing, but is a fait accompli, especially in the field of judo; a martial art and Olympic sport whose values are the cornerstone of our coexistence and the wall that protects our civilisation.

"We know it, because we have demonstrated it across three different centuries.

Teddy Riner was the target of racist vandalism earlier this week in Paris ©Getty Images
Teddy Riner was the target of racist vandalism earlier this week in Paris ©Getty Images

"Therefore, because we need our neighbour, we will celebrate this day all together as we have been doing since 2011 – together we are stronger."

To date, there have been more than 10.82 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 worldwide, resulting in the deaths of 519,000 people.

Earlier this week, the IJF condemned racism targeted at one of judo's greatest athletes, France's Teddy Riner, after someone scribbled a racist slur in graffiti on a photograph of him outside the National Institute of Sport, Expertise and Performance base in Paris.

Dimitri Bascou, one of France's greatest ever 110 metres hurdlers, was also targeted.

The graffiti appeared at a time when the Black Lives Matter movement has come to increased prominence around the world.

Protests have been held in numerous countries since the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who died after a white police officer knelt on his neck in Minneapolis.