The International Olympic Committee (IOC) is calling for international sports federations to relocate or cancel their events currently scheduled to be held in Russia and Belarus amidst the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine.
The IOC’s Executive Board (EB) issued a statement Friday, condemning the Russian and Belarusian governments for breaching the Olympic Truce and urging sports bodies to stop using the countries’ flags and national anthems in addition to pulling all events they were scheduled to host.
The IOC’s requests came shortly after UEFA moved its Champions League final from St. Petersburg to Paris, and the governing body of skiing and Formula One pulled their upcoming races from Russia.
“(International sports federations) should take the breach of the Olympic Truce by the Russian and Belarussian governments into account and give the safety and security of the athletes absolute priority,” the IOC said in its press release. “The IOC itself has no events planned in Russia or Belarus.”
The current attack is the third Russian breach of the Olympic Truce in the past 14 years, with Russia having invaded Georgia during the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing and then annexed the Crimean Peninsula of Ukraine shortly after the conclusion of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.
“In addition, the IOC EB urges that no Russian or Belarussian national flag be displayed and no Russian or Belarussian anthem be played in international sports events which are not already part of the respective World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) sanctions for Russia.”
The Olympic governing body had previously steadfastly resisted calls to move events from China in the wake of the country’s human rights issues, namely the recently-concluded Winter Olympic Games in Beijing, but have changed their tune in this instance.
The IOC’s EB also expressed full support to the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) for the upcoming Paralympic Winter Games in Beijing.
FINA currently has four international aquatics events scheduled to be held in Russia in 2022, including the Short Course World Championships in Kazan, Dec. 17-22.
The international governing body for aquatics sports issued a statement expressing “deep concern” for the conflict in Ukraine, but didn’t give any indications regarding canceling the scheduled events.
2022 FINA Hosting Calendar in Russia: