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Indonesia: IOC's Bach calls for 'political neutrality' in sports at G20 leaders summit01:34

Indonesia: IOC's Bach calls for 'political neutrality' in sports at G20 leaders summit

Indonesia, Bali
November 15, 2022 at 12:29 GMT +00:00 · Published

President of the International Olympic Committee Thomas Bach called for 'politically neutrality' in sport, as he addressed G20 leaders and representatives at the summit in Bali on Tuesday.

"In contrast to the far too many other wars and conflicts in our world, regarding this war (in Ukraine) some governments started to decide which athletes would be allowed to participate in international sports competitions – and which not," he stated.

"They did and they do so purely on political grounds," Bach continued. "If sport becomes in this way just another tool to achieve political goals, international sport will fall apart. <…> I appeal to you, the world leaders, to support this political neutrality."

Russian teams and athletes have been excluded from the FIFA World Cup, UEFA competitions and the UK’s Wimbledon tennis tournament, among others.

In February, the IOC’s executive board recommended bans for Russian and Belarusian athletes and officials, following the conflict in Ukraine.

In September, Bach suggested allowing those who oppose the Ukraine conflict to compete and said the organisation needed to think about its future, with qualifying for the Paris 2024 Olympics already underway.

Indonesia: IOC's Bach calls for 'political neutrality' in sports at G20 leaders summit01:34
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President of the International Olympic Committee Thomas Bach called for 'politically neutrality' in sport, as he addressed G20 leaders and representatives at the summit in Bali on Tuesday.

"In contrast to the far too many other wars and conflicts in our world, regarding this war (in Ukraine) some governments started to decide which athletes would be allowed to participate in international sports competitions – and which not," he stated.

"They did and they do so purely on political grounds," Bach continued. "If sport becomes in this way just another tool to achieve political goals, international sport will fall apart. <…> I appeal to you, the world leaders, to support this political neutrality."

Russian teams and athletes have been excluded from the FIFA World Cup, UEFA competitions and the UK’s Wimbledon tennis tournament, among others.

In February, the IOC’s executive board recommended bans for Russian and Belarusian athletes and officials, following the conflict in Ukraine.

In September, Bach suggested allowing those who oppose the Ukraine conflict to compete and said the organisation needed to think about its future, with qualifying for the Paris 2024 Olympics already underway.