Olympic Council of Asia president Sheikh Ahmad al-Fahad al-Sabah on Monday said he was “temporarily” stepping aside from his International Olympic Committee duties after he was charged with forgery in Switzerland.

The Kuwaiti, one of the most influential figures in international sport, said he “strenuously denies any wrongdoing”, calling the allegations “maliciously motivated by political factions within Kuwait”.

Sheikh Ahmad said he would stop his work with the IOC until he had been investigated by the body’s ethics commission.

“Sheikh Ahmad has today decided to step aside temporarily from his roles and responsibilities as an IOC member and chairman of Olympic Solidarity Commission, pending the outcome of an IOC Ethics Commission hearing,” said a statement from his office.

Sheikh Ahmad has been the president of the Olympic Council of Asia since 1991 a member of the IOC since 1992. He was also the president of the Kuwait Olympic committee, chairman of the Afro Asian Games council, vice president of the international handball federation, president of the Kuwait football association and Asian handball federation, according to the OCA website.

With inputs from AFP