IOC to discuss ROC's incorporation of illegally annexed territories at Executive Board meeting in Mumbai

IOC to discuss ROC's incorporation of illegally annexed territories at Executive Board meeting in Mumbai
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The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has started the "procedure to inquire in detail" about the Russian Olympic Committee's (ROC) decision to accept members from illegally annexed Ukrainian territories.

In a letter sent to the National Olympic Committee of Ukraine (NOCU) seen by insidethegames, IOC said it will discuss the matter at the Executive Board meeting in Mumbai next week after the inquiry.

The development comes after the NOCU accused ROC of violating the Olympic Charter.

Thank you for your letter dated 6 October 2023 which I have been reading with great interest," the letter from IOC signed by its President Thomas Bach read.

With this letter I would like to inform you that the IOC has stared the procedure inquire in detail about the inclusion of regional bodies to the Russian Olympic Committee.

Following this inquiry the matter will be discussed at the IOC Executive Board in Mumbai next week, I remain."

On Thursday (October 5), ROC welcomed the Olympic Councils of the Luhansk People's Republic (LPR), Donetsk People's Republic (DPR), Kherson and Zaporizhzhia as members at its Executive Committee meeting.

All four regions were annexed by Russia last year.

A copy of the letter sent by IOC to NOCU ©ITG

However, most of the international community has failed to recognise it.

ROC President Stanislav Pozdnyakov claimed he doesn’t see "any difficulties" after the regions were incorporated into its structure.

The move is set to add to the pressure on IOC and Bach, with participation of Russian and Belarusian athletes at the Paris 2024 Olympics in any capacity hanging in the balance.

German official Bach spoke today at the European Olympic Committees General Assembly in Istanbul.

The IOC has faced criticism after easing its stance on athletes from Russia and Belarus, allowing them to compete as individual neutrals in international competitions if they do not support the war and are no affiliated to the military.

The 141st IOC Session in Mumbai is scheduled to be held from October 15 to 17.

It will be preceded by Executive Board meetings from October 12 to 14.

Photo: © Getty Images
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