French biathlete supported the return of Russians and Belarusians to world sport


French biathlete Martin Fourcade spoke on the issue of the return of Russian and Belarusian athletes to the international arena – he believes that they should be allowed to compete in France, reports “Sport Express” 11 February.

“As an athlete, I believe that we should consider the possibility of returning Russian and Belarusian athletes to competitions. I was elected to the IOC to protect athletes. I feel like I’m not defending these athletes. Of course, they are Russians and Belarusians, but they are also athletes, ”said the biathlete.

He added that he has always fought with Russia on doping issues and is not going to give anyone the opportunity to accuse him of a pro-Russian position. The Frenchman also said that he would be ashamed of his country if the Russians and Belarusians were suspended from participating in the competition.

“We are incredibly proud to show the world how beautiful France is. And I cannot understand how we can host the world without Russian and Belarusian athletes. In my opinion, this is not something we should stand for,” Fourcade said.

According to him, even if this is not relevant for Paris 2024, it will be relevant for Cortina 2026 or Brisbane 2032, there is no deadline for this topic.

On February 7, Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo also invited Russian athletes to compete at the 2024 Summer Olympics as part of the refugee team. The refugee team performs under the Olympic flag, in honor of the victories of its athletes, the Olympic anthem should sound.

After that, on February 11, the Minister of Sports of the Russian Federation Oleg Matytsin said that such a proposal was an attempt to humiliate the Russians. According to him, this indicates the level of culture of the Parisian mayor, his misunderstanding of the essence, his active desire to split the unity and the violation of all principles.

On January 25, the IOC announced that they would consider allowing Russian athletes who do not support a special military operation to compete in a neutral status. In response, the press secretary of the President of the Russian Federation, Dmitry Peskov, said that even the wording of the initiative turned out to be too much politics, which “should be alien” to the ideas of the Olympic family.

The XXXIII Summer Olympic Games will be held in Paris from July 26 to August 11, 2024. The organizers of the Olympics confirmed that they intend to follow the decisions of the IOC regarding the admission of Russian and Belarusian athletes to international events.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here