Russian President Vladimir Putin accused the Worldwide Olympic Committee of “ethnic discrimination” forward of the 2024 Paris Video games, from which Russian and Belarusian athletes are banned from competing under their national flags.
The IOC nonetheless has to make a ultimate ruling on whether or not athletes from Russia and Belarus, a key ally for Moscow in its offensive on Ukraine, might be permitted to compete subsequent summer season.
“Thanks to some heads of the modern International Olympic Committee we found out that an invitation to the Games is not an unconditional right for the best athletes, but some kind of privilege and you can get it not on sports results but by some political gestures,” Putin stated at a sports activities discussion board within the Urals metropolis of Perm.
“The Games themselves could be used as an instrument of political pressure towards those people who have nothing to do with politics, and as a gross — in reality — racist, ethnic discrimination.”
He added that: “Some sports officials have simply given themselves the right to determine who is covered by the Olympic Charter and who is not.”
Putin later stated he believed new sporting our bodies and leagues would finally exchange what he referred to as an current “monopoly” over worldwide sport.
“All kinds of (new) leagues, associations, clubs and so on … They will certainly undermine the existing monopoly of officials over international sport,” he stated.
The IOC last week suspended Russia’s national Olympic body for violating the territorial integrity of Ukraine’s membership by recognising regional organisations in occupied Ukraine.
Russia launched a full-scale offensive in opposition to Ukraine in February 2022, with its neighbour Belarus permitting Moscow’s troops to make use of its territory as a launchpad.