Broad Coalition to Boycott 2024 Olympics if Russian, Belarusian Athletes Compete

    Broad Coalition to Boycott 2024 Olympics if Russian, Belarusian Athletes Compete
    Last updated Feb 03, 2023
    Image credit: Reuters


    • Poland's sport and tourism minister Kamil Bortniczuk stated on Thursday that a coalition of up to 40 countries — including Britain, Canada, and the US — could potentially boycott the Paris 2024 Olympic Games if Russian and Belarusian athletes are allowed to compete.[1]
    • Warsaw has joined the Baltic nations in a statement calling for the rejection of any effort by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to return such athletes, even under a neutral flag, claiming that it would legitimize the propaganda and politics of those countries.[2]
    • Latvia — one of the Baltic states — on Wednesday became the first nation other than Ukraine to threaten to boycott next year's Olympic Games. The nation also threatened to boycott Olympic qualifying tournaments, rather than compete against Russia and Belarus.[3]
    • Ukraine's sports minister Vadym Guttsait warned last week that his country would refuse to participate in the Olympics if athletes from the two countries are included in the international competitions, adding that talks over a possible boycott had already begun.[4]
    • The IOC stated on Thursday that "the participation of individual, neutral athletes with Russian and Belarusian passports" is yet to be discussed, and noted that a boycott would violate the Olympic charter and serve only to punish the athletes of the boycotting nations.[5]
    • Sanctions imposed last year on Belarus and Russia in response to the invasion of Ukraine — including a ban on the formal appearance of either country at the Olympics — will reportedly remain in place. However, IOC officials have argued that banning athletes based solely on their nationality could constitute discrimination.[6]


    Anti-Russia narrative

    It is outrageous that the same IOC that recommended barring Belarusian and Russian athletes last year is now considering allowing them to compete at Paris 2024. If they enable participation, the IOC would be endorsing aggression against Ukraine on the international stage. The Kremlin's propaganda machine has long exploited sports to empower the belligerent and criminal Putin regime — there is no place for Russians at the Olympic Games.

    Pro-Russia narrative

    The IOC is finally reversing its disgraceful recommendation to ban Belarusian and Russian athletes from International competitions — a direct form of discrimination against Russia when Moscow launched its military operation in Ukraine. No athlete should face discrimination on the basis of their nationality or be forced to take sides in a conflict that does not concern the rest of the world. Russian athletes must be allowed to compete at Paris 2024, at least under a neutral flag.

    Nerd narrative

    There's a 26% chance that there will be a bilateral cease-fire or peace agreement in the Russo-Ukraine conflict before 2024, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

    Establishment split



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