Paris 2024: Ukraine’s boycott of qualifying occasions ‘raises critical 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 below a impartial flag

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

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

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

“If carried out, such a choice would damage solely the Ukrainian athlete group,” mentioned the IOC in response to Ukraine’s stance.

“It could on no account affect the conflict that the world needs to cease, and that the IOC has so vehemently condemned.

“This raises critical questions concerning the autonomy of Ukrainian sport. The IOC has all the time maintained that it isn’t as much as governments to determine which athletes can take part through which worldwide competitions.”

The IOC added that the choice goes towards “the place of plenty of Ukrainian athletes and different members of the Ukrainian Olympic group”.

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

And originally of April, minister Nemchinov indicated that any Ukrainian sporting physique permitting athletes to compete in qualifying occasions towards Russians might lose its nationwide standing.

However the IOC says that any athlete selecting to compete “might depend on the direct help of the Olympic Motion’s Solidarity Fund”.

A press release from the Affiliation of Nationwide Olympic Committees (ANOC) mentioned it “expressed alarm” on the boycott.

“Any authorities requires boycotts signify 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 group and can straight 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 for Russian and Belarusian athletes competing below a impartial flag at its worldwide occasions.

It added its help for the IOC’s advice 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 group, will start work instantly on creating a advice 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 means”.

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