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The Olympic Council of Asia opens the door of its competitions to Russian and Belarusian athletes


The Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) proposed on Thursday to integrate Russian and Belarusian athletes into its regional competitions such as the...

The Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) proposed Thursday to integrate Russian and Belarusian athletes into its regional competitions such as the Asian Games, the day after a decision by the International Committee considering their return to world sport despite the continued invasion of Ukraine by Moscow.

The Asian organization expressed in a statement its "


" for the position of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) according to which "

no athlete should be banned from competition on the sole basis of his passport

", in full preparation for the Olympic Games in 2024 in Paris.

Asian competitions


The COA has offered to give eligible Russian and Belarusian athletes the opportunity to compete in Asia, including the Asian Games

," the Kuwait-based regional body said.

While Russians and Belarusians, whose regime is allied with Moscow, have been banned from most world tournaments since the invasion of Ukraine in late February 2022, the OCA said it believes in the "

ability of sport to unite


The COA, however, said it was "


" the IOC's decisions on the subject, while discussions with the federations continue.

On Wednesday, the IOC Executive Board urged the federations to "

study further the way

" in which the athletes concerned could re-enter the competitions "

under strict conditions

", "

as neutral athletes

" and provided they have "no

actively supported the war in Ukraine


Read alsoOlympic Games: the Court of Auditors urges the organizers to meet the deadlines

In response to this announcement, the mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo said Thursday that she was in favor of the participation of Russian athletes, but under a neutral banner, in the 2024 Olympics in the French capital, despite calls from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky asking for their exclusion.

The Olympic Council of Asia's proposal could allow Russian and Belarusian athletes to participate in its regional qualifying events, some of which have already started, for the 2024 Olympics.

Source: lefigaro

All news articles on 2023-01-26

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