Russian, Belarusian athletes can compete at Paris Olympics

TEHRAN, Jan. 26 (MNA) – The International Olympic Committee has been criticised after it further paved the way for Russian and Belarusian athletes to compete at the 2024 Olympic Games.

Athletes from Russia and Belarus could participate in Olympic qualification events in Asia, as the International Olympic Committee (IOC) examines options for the return of both countries to international sporting events, it said in a statement on Wednesday.

The sports elite from Russia and Belarus have been restricted from competing in various events over the last eleven months after the IOC announced the introduction of sanctions soon after the onset of Russia’s military action in Ukraine last year.

More recently, IOC president Thomas Bach has stated that while he believes that sanctions should continue against the governments of Russia and Belarus, he hoped to explore ways for athletes from the two affected countries to continue to compete in the international field, provided that they satisfy certain criteria.

In a media release on Wednesday, the IOC said that it “welcomed and appreciated the offer from the Olympic Council of Asia to give [Russian and Belarusian] athletes access to Asian competitions.”

This could potentially clear a pathway for athletes from these countries to qualify for the next Olympic Games in Paris in 2024. Many athletes are currently unable to compete in European Olympic qualifying events due to the wave of sanctions introduced by the IOC last year.

The IOC has stated that it believes that Russians and Belarusians should be permitted to compete in Paris under a neutral Olympic flag; however, questions remain as to how competitors from both countries could qualify.


News Code 196657


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