Paris 2024: Ukraine’s boycott of qualifying occasions ‘raises severe questions’, says the IOC

Russia flag at Olympics Games
The Worldwide Olympic Committee has really useful that Russian and Belarusian athletes are allowed to compete however solely underneath a impartial flag

Ukraine’s choice to boycott Paris 2024 Olympics qualifying occasions if Russians are collaborating “raises severe questions”, says the Worldwide Olympic Committee (IOC).

The IOC has really useful that Russian and Belarusian athletes are allowed to compete underneath a impartial flag.

However it has but to decide on the Olympic Video games in Paris in 2024.

“If applied, such a choice would harm solely the Ukrainian athlete neighborhood,” mentioned the IOC in response to Ukraine’s stance.

“It might on no account affect the struggle that the world desires to cease, and that the IOC has so vehemently condemned.

“This raises severe questions concerning the autonomy of Ukrainian sport. The IOC has at all times maintained that it’s not as much as governments to resolve which athletes can take part wherein worldwide competitions.”

The IOC added that the choice goes in opposition to “the place of a variety of Ukrainian athletes and different members of the Ukrainian Olympic neighborhood”.

Ukraine’s president Volodymyr Zelensky mentioned in January that Russian athletes ought to have “no place” on the Paris Video games.

And at the start of April, minister Nemchinov indicated that any Ukrainian sporting physique permitting athletes to compete in qualifying occasions in opposition to Russians may lose its nationwide standing.

However the IOC says that any athlete selecting to compete “may rely on the direct assist of the Olympic Motion’s Solidarity Fund”.

An announcement from the Affiliation of Nationwide Olympic Committees (ANOC) mentioned it “expressed alarm” on the boycott.

“Any authorities requires boycotts symbolize a direct interference within the autonomy of sport,” it mentioned.

“These will solely contribute to the isolation of Nationwide Olympic Committees from the worldwide sporting neighborhood and can instantly have an effect on the goals and aspirations of athletes.”

World Aquatics helps IOC’s stance

World Aquatics says it has arrange a taskforce to discover the potential of Russian and Belarusian athletes competing underneath a impartial flag at its worldwide occasions.

It added its assist for the IOC’s suggestion of the identical stance.

However it’s in distinction to World Athletics’ ruling which says Russian athletes stay banned “for the foreseeable future”.

“The taskforce, made up of athletes and representatives from throughout the aquatics neighborhood, will start work instantly on creating a suggestion to the World Aquatics Bureau,” World Aquatics mentioned.

In 2022, World Aquatics moved the short-course world swimming championships from Kazan, Russia, to Melbourne.

Kazan has been changed by Singapore for the 2025 World Aquatics Championships.

The taskforce will report its findings to the World Aquatics Bureau in July, which makes it unlikely that any Russian or Belarusian athletes will compete within the World Swimming Championships which happen in Fukuoka, Japan, between 14-30 July.

Equestrian maintains Russia and Belarus ban

The Worldwide Equestrian Federation (FEI) introduced on Wednesday {that a} ban on Russian and Belarusian athletes, horses and officers from collaborating in its occasions will stay in place till additional discover.

The FEI launched the measure in March 2022 following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

FEI president Ingmar de Vos mentioned the board mentioned the IOC’s proposal for the return of Russian and Belarusian athletes as neutrals however agreed that “at this stage neutrality can’t be outlined and evaluated in a sufficiently passable approach”.

De Vos added that no occasions organised in Russia and Belarus can be entered within the FEI calendar for 2023.