** An appropriate recommendation spoke the top of the International Olympic Committee on Monday to all world associations and organizers of sporting events. Background are the sanctions in the course of Ukraine war against Russia and its allies Belarus. In addition, the IOC KremlinChef Vladimir Putin and other Russian top politicians recognized the Olympic Order in gold awarded them in the past.
The executive of the IOC made his decisions “with a heavy heart”, it was said in a message. Although the Olympic movement wanted to stand over all political conflicts, the war in Ukraine now put them in a dilemma. Many Ukrainian athletes could no longer participate in sports competitions because of the attack on their country, while this was possible for Russians and Belaruses. Therefore, one had come to the decision to demand an exclusion of athletes from Russia and Belarus to maintain the integrity and security of competitions.
Where this is not possible at short notice or legal reasons, these athletes should not be allowed to participate in their flag or hymn, but as neutral athletes or teams. Shortly before, the German Olympic Sports Bund (DOSB) had been pronounced for such a step.
From the ranks of the sports community, the pressure on organizations such as the IOC and the Football World Association FIFA has become increasingly stronger. In an open letter from Ukrainian and international athletes as well as associations, IOC President Thomas Bach and Paralympics boss Andrew Parson had been asked to suspend Russian and the Belarusian Olympic and Paralympic Committee. “Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, supported by Belarus, is a clear violation of the Charter of the Olympic and Paralympic Games – a violation that must be punished with strict sanctions,” it said in writing.