The International Olympic Committee on Friday allowed Russian and Belarusian athletes to compete as independent athletes at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games without flags, emblems or anthems.
Athletes were initially banned from international competition following Russia's invasion of Ukraine two years ago, however, in March, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) issued recommendations to international sports federations to allow Russian and Belarusian competitors to return, and have since done so at most events.
"The IOC Board of Directors (EB) has decided that individual neutral athletes' who have qualified through the existing qualification systems of the International Federations will be declared eligible to compete in the Paris 2024 Olympic Games under a number of conditions: they will be without flags or insignia of the countries, and they have not actively supported the war in the past." The Olympic body said in a statement.
The neutral athletes from Russia and Belarus will compete only in individual sports and teams from both countries will not be allowed to participate in Paris. No government or state official will be invited to the Games. The big question now is how Ukraine will react to the decision and whether it will eventually boycott the Games.
The hottest sports articles and updates on your Telegram
, Paris 2024. Photo: AP
Wrong? We'll fix it! If you find a mistake in the article, please share with us