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Off the carpet: IOC bans Putin-supporting Russian Olympic champion from 2024 Olympics qualifiers

Stock photo: Getty Images
Stock photo: Getty Images

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has banned the two-time Olympic freestyle wrestling champion and captain of the Russian wrestling team Abdul-Rashid Sadulayev to compete a few days before the start of the licensing tournament in Baku because of his support for Russia's aggression against Ukraine and the leader of the terrorist country, Vladimir Putin.

Azerbaijan, on the other hand, can qualify for the Olympic Games in Paris.

Source: Russian Wrestling Federation

Details: Sadulayev took part in the opening of a propaganda event in support of the Russian war in Ukraine called The Republican freestyle wrestling tournament dedicated to the memory of the soldiers coming from Kazbek (Dagestan, Russia) killed during the military operations in Ukraine. He was the guest of honour at these competitions.

Earlier, we reported that nine Russian wrestlers who support Russia's military actions against Ukraine may take part in the qualifying tournaments for the 2024 Olympics in Paris.

They were Anvar Allakhiarov, Sergei Semenov, Artur Naifonov, Nadezhda Sokolova, Natalia Malisheva, Alina Kasabieva, Roman Vlasov, Olga Khoroshavtseva and the aforementioned Sadulaev.

However, Ukraine’s National Olympic Committee, the Ministry of Youth and Sports and the Wrestling Association of Ukraine pointed out in a joint letter to the IOC and the International Wrestling Federation that these athletes had supported the Russian-Ukrainian war, participated in propaganda events, made public statements in support of the Russian regime and visited the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine.

The heads of Ukrainian relevant agencies and organisations called on their international colleagues to take measures to comply with the IOC recommendations on the neutral status of athletes from the Russian Federation and the Republic of Belarus.

Background:

  • 18-year-old futsal player Bohdan Kozak died defending Ukraine against the Russian invasion.

  • Ukrainian trampolinist's mother was killed in Russian missile attack.

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