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Paris Mayor says no to Russians with war

Published on February 8th, 2023

When Russia launched a large-scale invasion of Ukraine in 2022 during the Olympic Truce, which extends from the Olympic Games to the Paralympic Game, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) asked for all international sports federations to ban Russian and Belarusian athletes and officials from competitions.

Nearly a year later, with the no break in the war, the resolve of the IOC is teetering. While there is still time before the Paris 2024 Games, the qualifying competitions for the Games begin this year. While the IOC considers a way forward, the Mayor of the host city is leaning into the conversation:

Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo says she does not want a Russian delegation at the 2024 Olympics while the war continues in Ukraine. Hidalgo added that she did not believe the “neutral” banner which Russians may be allowed to compete under existed.

This marks a change in opinion from comments by Hidalgo last month when she came out in support of the position of the IOC, who said they were exploring options for Russian athletes to participate under a neutral banner.

In an interview with France Info, Hidalgo said: “As long as Russia continues to wage war on Ukraine, I don’t want there to be a Russian delegation at the Paris 2024 Games. I would find that indecent.

“It is not possible to parade as if nothing had happened, to have a delegation come to Paris, while the bombs continue to rain down on Ukraine.”

Hidalgo also claimed that the neutral banner “does not really exist”, but said it was important to establish a distinction with “dissident Russians who want to march under a banner of refugees” and who do not “support Vladimir Putin in his aggression”, as reported by L’Equipe.

Minister of Youth and Sports in Ukraine Vadym Guttsait warned the nation was considering a boycott of Paris 2024 if Russia and Belarus were present, although the IOC said in response that any boycott would be a violation of the Olympic Charter. – Full report

Paris 2024 Olympic Sailing Program:
Men’s One Person Dinghy – ILCA 7
Women’s One Person Dinghy – ILCA 6
Mixed Two Person Dinghy – 470
Men’s Skiff – 49er
Women’s Skiff – 49erFx
Men’s Kiteboard – Formula Kite Class
Women’s Kiteboard – Formula Kite Class
Men’s Windsurfing – iQFoil
Women’s Windsurfing – iQFoil
Mixed Multihull – Nacra 17

Venue: Marseille, France
Dates: July 26-August 11


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