Poland and Baltic countries against the presence of Russians and Belarusians at the 2024 Olympics

Poland and the Baltic countries against the presence of Russians and Belarusians at the 2024 Olympics


Poland and the Baltic countries (Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia) will oppose the presence of Russian and Belarusian athletes at the Paris-2024 Olympic Games, even under a neutral flag, the Latvian Minister of Affairs said on Tuesday

Last week, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) provoked the wrath of Ukraine by proposing a roadmap to organize the return of banned athletes under neutral flag, provided that they have “not actively supported the war in Ukraine”.

Kyiv immediately accused the Olympic body of “promoting war”, and threatened to boycott the Paris Games if Russians took part.< /p>

On Tuesday, the head of Latvian diplomacy Edgars Rinkevics took a stand in the debate: “The decision to allow Russians and Belarusians to participate in the next Games is immoral and wrong”, he tweeted on the sidelines of a meeting in Riga with its Polish, Lithuanian and Estonian counterparts.

Through the voice of its president Zorzs Tikmer, the Latvian Olympic Committee has already threatened to boycott the Olympic Games: “Latvia will not participate in the Games alongside the country aggressor,” he said.

Last week, Polish Sports Minister Kamil Bortniczuk had already said that he “did not imagine” the possibility of Russians and Belarusians participating in the Olympic Games.

In Estonia, the first Minister Kaja Kallas said on Monday that letting the Russians compete “would be a mockery of the Ukrainians and the tens of thousands of them who lost their lives in the worst crime against humanity perpetrated in Europe since the Second World War”. /p>

The Lithuanian Minister of Education, who is due to meet with her Latvian and Estonian counterparts for Sports, has also indicated that she will urge them to request the exclusion of Russians and Belarusians.

Recaptured by the Soviets from the armies of the Reich at the end of the Second World War, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia were annexed by the USSR and remained an integral part of it until its dismantling in 1990 .

Poland lived under a communist regime controlled by Moscow until than in 1989.