Athletes from Russia, Belarus barred from Paralympic Games as protests jeopardize 'viability', IPC says

4 mins read

[ad_1]

NEWYou can now listen to Fox News articles!

The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) backtracked on its original decision to allow athletes from Russia and Belarus to compete as “neutrals” in the 2022 Winter Paralympic Games in Beijing.

The organization announced Thursday that they will no longer be allowed to participate as protests from other nations are “jeopardizing the viability” of the Games. 

The IPC issued a news release just one day after confirming that athletes from Russia, who compete under the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC), and Belarus would be allowed to compete but not under their flag and would also not be included in the official medal table. 

RUSSIA INVADES UKRAINE: LIVE UPDATES 

“Multiple National Paralympic Committees (NPCs), teams and athletes now threatening not to compete, jeopardizing the viability of the Beijing 2022 Paralympic Winter Games,” the news release read. “Situation in the athlete villages is escalating and ensuring the safety of athletes has become untenable.”

Lee Reaney, a Canadian journalist working for the Kyiv Post, holds a photo of Yevhen Malyshev, a 19-year-old former athlete on Ukraine's junior biathlon team who, according to the International Biathlon Union, died serving the Ukrainian military, as he speaks during a press conference at the 2022 Winter Paralympics in Beijing, Wednesday, March 2, 2022. 

Lee Reaney, a Canadian journalist working for the Kyiv Post, holds a photo of Yevhen Malyshev, a 19-year-old former athlete on Ukraine’s junior biathlon team who, according to the International Biathlon Union, died serving the Ukrainian military, as he speaks during a press conference at the 2022 Winter Paralympics in Beijing, Wednesday, March 2, 2022. 
(AP Photo/Andy Wong)

The IPC’s initial decision on Wednesday was met with harsh backlash from the sporting world, including from the Athletes of Ukraine, who accused the IPC and International Olympic Committee (IOC) of “choosing bloodshed and profits over principle” amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. 

UKRAINIAN ATHLETES SLAM IPC, IOC FOR ‘CHOOSING BLOODSHED AND PROFITS OVER PRINCIPLE’ AMID RUSSIAN INVASION 

“As Russian and Belarusian bombs rain down on the Ukrainian citizens, the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) today issued another blow to every Ukrainian athlete and citizen by allowing Russian and Belarusian athletes to compete at the Beijing 2022 Paralympic Winter Games,” the statement read. 

CLICK HERE FOR MORE SPORTS COVERAGE ON FOXNEWS.COM

International Paralympic Committee President Andrew Parsons speaks during an IPC press conference in Main news center on March 2, 2022 in Beijing, China. 

International Paralympic Committee President Andrew Parsons speaks during an IPC press conference in Main news center on March 2, 2022 in Beijing, China. 
(Wang He/Getty Images for International Paralympic Committee)

“Today’s decision from the IPC provides another example of the stranglehold the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has over the IPC. The IOC influenced the IPC decision to allow Russia back from institutional doping, and has influenced today’s decision as well,” the statement read. “On Monday, the IOC failed to suspend the Russian and Belrarusian National Olympic committees. Today the IPC does the same. Both the IOC and IPC continued to choose politics over principle and Russian interests over athletes’ interest.” 

Russia condemned the IPC’s decision on Thursday, calling it a “disgrace.”

“The situation is monstrous, of course. This is a disgrace for the International Paralympic Committee,” Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said, via Reuters. “We strongly condemn the International Paralympic Committee for this decision.”

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Russian and Belarusian flags wave during a wreath-laying ceremony at the Victory Monument. 

Russian and Belarusian flags wave during a wreath-laying ceremony at the Victory Monument. 
(Ramil NasibulinTASS via Getty Images)

The Games begin Friday. According to Reuters, there is already a 71-member Russian team and a 12-member team from Belarus in Beijing.



[ad_2]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Latest from Blog