Thirty countries challenge the IOC on Russian sports teams

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Thirty countries challenge the IOC on Russian sports teams


The governments of more than 30 countries asked the IOC for “clarification” on Monday on how Russian and Belarusian athletes can compete as equal athletes in the competition. Paris 2024 Olympics.

Russia and its ally Belarus, which allowed its territory to be used as a staging post when Moscow launched its invasion of Ukraine last February, have been excluded from most Olympic games since the start of the war.

Of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) said it was exploring a “way” to allow Russian and Belarusian competitors to participate in the Paris Games, under a neutral flag – sparking anger from Ukraine.

But in a joint letter seen by AFP, the country expressed concern especially because of the “strong ties and connections between Russian athletes and the Russian military”.

“We have serious concerns about the ability of Russian and Belarusian Olympic athletes to compete as ‘neutrals’… if they are directly funded and supported by their states,” the leaked letter said. by AFP.

It said “these strong concerns must be addressed by the IOC.”

The joint letter to the IOC followed a meeting earlier this month in London attended by France, Britain, the United States and Canada, among others.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky also spoke at the meeting.

“We strongly believe that, since there is no change in the situation regarding the Russian aggression in Ukraine … there is no valid reason to depart from the exemption regime for Russian and Belarusian players set by the IOC,” it read. .

“As long as these important issues are not discussed with the great lack of clarity and detailed analysis on a practical ‘neutrality’ model, we do not agree that Russian and Belarusian athletes should be allowed back into the competition, ” is the end of the book.


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