Following the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS)’s decision, the 2021 European Short Course Swimming Championships will remain in Kazan, Russia.
LEN, the European swimming federation, held an online meeting over the weekend.
“As of now,” said a LEN spokesperson, “since the CAS decision only rules out Olympic Games and World Championships in Russia and not continental events, LEN sees no objection to stage the short-course Europeans in Kazan.”
CAS upheld a ban on Russia’s participation in international sport, but shortened the ban from four years to two. The CAS decision also pulled back some of the specifics of the ban. Originally, Russia was barred from hosting major sporting events hosted by any WADA signatory – including the European federation. But the CAS decision only bans Russia from hosting the Olympics, Paralympics, or World Championships events.
The CAS decision also holds that Russia will not be represented at the Olympics, Paralympics, or World Championships, though Russian athletes can compete under a neutral banner for both individual and relay events. The CAS decision specifically references the Olympics, Paralympics, and World Championships, appearing to allow Russia to compete as a nation at events like the European Championships.
The two-year ban will run through December 16, 2022. It also prevents Russian officials from sitting on boards or committees for WADA signatories, and will prevent Russian officials from attending the Olympics, Paralympics, or World Championships events.
The original ban would have required new hosts for several major swimming events: the 2021 European Short Course Championships, the 2022 World Short Course Championships, and the 2024 European Aquatics Championships. All three were set to take place in Kazan, Russia. It now appears both European meets can remain in Russia. The 2022 World Short Course Championships could technically stay in Russia if they don’t start until after the ban expires on December 16.
Meanwhile, the CAS decision is also very specific in applying only to the Olympics, Paralympics, and World Championships. That means any junior-level event, event the World Junior Championships, could still be hosted in Russia during the two-year sanction period.