Russia War: Zelensky Says Russian Athletes Cannot Attend Olympics
Allowing Russia to participate in the 2024 Paris Olympics, according to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, would amount to demonstrating that “horror is somehow acceptable.”
He claimed to have brought up the matter with Emmanuel Macron, the president of France.
He continued, “Moscow must not be permitted to use the Olympics for propaganda.”
According to the International Olympic Committee (IOC), athletes from Belarus and Russia may participate in the Olympics as neutrals.
Ukraine, meanwhile, has stated that if Russian and Belarusian athletes are permitted to compete, Paris 2024 will be boycotted.
In his weekly video address, Mr. Zelensky claimed that the IOC’s efforts “to get Russian athletes back into the Olympic Games are attempts to teach the whole world that terror is somehow acceptable.”
The Olympics and any other sporting event must not be used by Russia as “propaganda for its aggressiveness or its state chauvinism,” he continued.
This Monday, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced that competitors from Russia and Belarus could compete as “neutral athletes,” claiming that “no athlete should be banned from competing just because of their passport.”
However, Mr. Zelensky asserts that neutrality in athletics is impossible while athletes from his nation are losing their lives on the battlefield.
Additionally, he made comparisons to the 1936 Berlin Olympics, held under Nazi rule.
There was a significant Olympic error, he claimed. “Terrorist states and the Olympic movement should never interact.”
The decision to enable athletes to participate neutrally has also drawn criticism from the UK government for being “a world removed from the reality of war.”