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IOC quietly smuggles Russia and Belarus into Olympic movement

#StandWithUkraine
March 28,2023 761
IOC quietly smuggles Russia and Belarus into Olympic movement

On Tuesday, the Executive Board of the International Olympic Committee (IOC EB) issued recommendations for International Federations (IF) and international sports event organizers on the participation of athletes with a Russian or Belarusian passport in international competitions.

Having reiterated its condemnation of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, which is a blatant violation of the Olympic Truce and of the Olympic Charter, the IOC EB seems to depart from logic as it de facto recommends bringing Russians and Belarusian back to international competitions.

The Board’s recommendations are as follows:

  1. Athletes with a Russian or a Belarusian passport must compete only as Individual Neutral Athletes.
  2. Teams of athletes with a Russian or Belarusian passport cannot be considered.
  3. Athletes who actively support the war cannot compete. Support personnel who actively support the war cannot be entered.
  4. Athletes who are contracted to the Russian or Belarusian military or national security agencies cannot compete. Support personnel who are contracted to the Russian or Belarusian military or national security agencies cannot be entered.
  5. Any such Individual Neutral Athlete, like all the other participating athletes, must meet all anti-doping requirements applicable to them and particularly those set out in the anti-doping rules of the IFs.
  6. The sanctions against those responsible for the war, the Russian and Belarusian states and governments, must remain in place:
    1. No international sports events organized or supported by an IF or NOC in Russia or Belarus.
    2. No flag, anthem, colors or any other identifications whatsoever of these countries displayed at any sports event or meeting, including the entire venue.
    3. No Russian and Belarusian government or state official can be invited to or accredited for any international sports event or meeting.

These recommendations apply only to international sports competitions and do not concern the participation of Russian or Belarusian passport holders in the Olympic Games Paris 2024 or the Olympic Winter Games Milano Cortina 2026. “The IOC will take this decision at the appropriate time, at its full discretion, and without being bound by the results of previous Olympic qualification competitions,” the Executive Board stated.

Let’s wait but it looks like the first step in the wrong direction has been made.

Photo: IOC President Thomas Bach presses his hand to the left side of his chest as if he has a heart.

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