In the debate about re-admitting Russian and Belarusian athletes to the international stage, the International Olympic Committee insists on the autonomy of sports organizations and has criticized a statement by the European Parliament.
This is "in clear contradiction to the unifying peace-building mandate of the Olympic Games and the Olympic Charter, which has been approved several times by the European Union and its member states," as an IOC spokesman said.
In a resolution last week, MEPs called on the 27 EU states and the international community to put pressure on the IOC to reverse its "shameful decision". Allowing athletes from the two countries to compete under a neutral flag runs counter to the multifaceted isolation of these countries and is being used by both regimes for propaganda purposes, it said.
No decision made yet
However, the IOC noted that no decision had been made, citing the concerns of two United Nations special rapporteurs. They had asked the IOC to ensure that athletes were not discriminated against based on their nationality.
A possible re-admission of Russian and Belarusian athletes to the sports stage has been the subject of heated debate for weeks. Ukraine threatens to boycott the Olympics. Former boxing world champion Wladimir Klitschko recently asked IOC boss Thomas Bach to get his own picture of the war in Ukraine.
"Mr. Bach should go to Bucha. It's time he compared the propaganda from Moscow with the reality on the ground," said Klitschko in an interview with the "Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung". Clear criticism also came from the Baltic states.