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Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Boycott the Olympics? 40 countries can participate, Czechs don’t think about it

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“Attempts by the International Olympic Committee to bring Russian and Belarusian athletes back to competition even under a neutral flag must be rejected,” the sports ministers of Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia and Poland said on Thursday.

According to them, efforts to return Russian and Belarusian athletes justify the politics and propaganda of both countries.

This is another sign of resentment towards the IOC, which announced at the end of January that it is investigating the conditions for athletes from Russia and Belarus to qualify for the next Summer Olympics in Paris. They can appear on it as “neutral athletes” and on the condition that they do not actively support the war in Ukraine.

However, Kyiv did not support such a vision and explained that there was no neutrality that the sports organization was trying to establish. Since last week, the country has accused the IOC of supporting a “brutal war” and has demanded the complete exclusion of Russians and Belarusians from the upcoming event. If this does not happen, Ukraine does not exclude the boycott of the Olympic Games.

As reported on the BBC website, Polish Minister of Sports and Tourism Kamil Bortniczuk believes it will be possible to form a coalition of up to 40 countries, including the UK, USA and Canada, that will support the blocking of the IOC’s plans. even before the meeting scheduled for next week. Such a move would make organizing games pointless.

However, according to Thursday’s information, the Czech Olympic Committee is not considering boycotting the event. “There is no boycott for us because we will not punish Czech athletes for Russian aggression. We apologized to the athletes for boycotting the 1984 Los Angeles Games and do not want to repeat this frustrating experience during the communist era.”

“The whole debate about whether Russian and Belarusian athletes should participate in the Olympic Games is only the beginning, the position of international sports federations is decisive,” representatives of the AAT said. international committee warning against hasty conclusions.

“It is deeply regrettable to escalate this debate at such an early stage with the threat of boycott,” the IOC said on Thursday, with a series of questions and answers regarding the boycott of the Games. He also noted that the details of the participation of Russian and Belarusian athletes have not yet been officially discussed.

However, at the end of January, the board said that “no athlete should be prevented from participating in competitions simply because of his passport”. He also appreciated that the Olympic Council of Asia blessed athletes from Russia and Belarus in December to participate in competitions within its jurisdiction in preparation for the Paris Olympics.

Russian athletes have not competed in the Olympics under their country’s flag since 2016, when organizers banned a third of the Russian team from competing after cases of state-sponsored doping emerged. Although Russia denied the accusation, the Russian representatives could not participate in the next matches for their country.

Russia and the Olympic Games

The International Olympic Committee basically gave the green light to Russian athletes who wanted to participate in the Summer Olympics in Paris. They can compete as “neutral athletes”.

But not enough for Moscow. He wants to ensure that his representatives are allowed to go to the Olympics without any restrictions.

However, Russian athletes did not completely disappear from the Olympics, although they could have their country’s name and colors printed on their clothes, they were allowed to participate on the condition that there were words emphasizing their “neutrality”. equally dominant. The audience will most likely see a similar show in Paris next year.

At the last Summer Olympics held in Tokyo in 2021, Russian athletes took fifth place in the so-called ranking of countries “under a neutral flag” with 20 gold medals and a total of 71 precious metals. They finished the last Winter Olympics in Beijing in 2022, again in ninth place with a total of six gold and 32 medals; this was the second highest number of absolute precious metals in the Games.

Source: Seznam Zpravy

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