The International Olympic Committee (IOC) criteria for admitting Russian athletes to international tournaments are “absolutely unacceptable” and discriminatory. On this subject said in the official statement of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC).
On the evening of March 28, the IOC Executive Committee recommended that athletes from Russia and Belarus be allowed to participate in international competitions under a neutral flag. However, as clarified by the head of the International Olympic Committee, Thomas Bach, this only applies to individual sports, as well as those that do not support the military operation in Ukraine and are not associated with the Russian army.
In addition, the IOC said sports federations should take into account athletes’ public statements, their participation in rallies and the presence or absence of symbols of support for the special operation in Ukraine when deciding admission. to the competition.
At the same time, the teams of Russia and Belarus still offer not to be considered as participants in international competitions. A similar decision was made regarding athletes associated with the Russian armed forces and security agencies, including the restriction may apply to athletes who are members of the CSKA sports society and represent the National Guard.
The committee also noted that the final decision on the admission of Russian athletes to the 2024 Olympics in Paris has not yet been made, this issue will be considered at another meeting.
The ROC sees the recommendations of the IOC Executive Committee as “an admission of its own error when it decided not to allow Russian athletes”.
“Neutral status is a clear discrimination based on nationality, a violation of fundamental human and civil rights. What international experts have repeatedly paid attention to. It is significant that their position is completely ignored,” the message read.
According to the National Olympic Committee, the ban on the participation of Russians in team competitions is “not only discrimination against athletes by passport, but also by the disciplines they represent”.
“Deprive at least 30% of our Olympic team representatives of the opportunity to participate in qualifying and qualifying competitions without any legal basis. This approach is contrary to the Olympic Charter, the UN Charter, humanitarian, civil and all generally accepted standards,” added the press service of the organization.
They also added that the position declared by the IOC on the non-admission to international competitions of Russian athletes who are listed in the armed forces and law enforcement agencies or who have contractual relations with them, “aims to divide the community of our athletes, to divide them into “permitted” and “other” not only on a national basis, to cause damage to the sports industry in Russia as a whole.
The International Olympic Committee recommended removing athletes from Russia and Belarus from participation in international tournaments in February 2022. In early 2023, the question of allowing representatives of these countries to compete under a neutral flag was raised.
The reason for this was the statement of the UN special rapporteurs on human rights, who were concerned about possible discrimination against athletes. However, the governments of more than 30 countries disagreed with the admission of Russians and Belarusians and also criticized the concept of their possible neutral status.
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