Russian and Belarusian figure skaters banned from international competition
The teenage figure skating prodigy, alongside Winter Olympics gold and silver medalists Anna Shcherbakova and Alexandra Trusova and the rest of the Russian team, looks set to be kicked out of the World Championships. world, which will take place in Montpellier, France, from March 21, after the ISU said the ban would take place “until further notice” due to Russian attacks on Ukraine.
Officials – including judges and technical specialists – from both countries are also to be banned from ISU competitions.
An investigation into a December test that found a banned substance in Ms Valieva’s sample rocked the Beijing Winter Olympics and is still ongoing. Ms Valieva, who was in first place after the women’s short program, slipped to fourth following a disastrous performance in the free skate following reports of doping allegations. As a minor, it was decided that Ms. Valieva could continue to participate in the competition. However, the medals from the team competition, in which Russia won gold, are still pending, due to Ms Valieva’s participation.
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In a statement released early this morning, the ISU said it had assessed a statement issued yesterday by the International Olympic Committee, as well as appeals received from ISU members.
He said: “Following the recommendation of the IOC, in order to protect the integrity of ice skating competitions and for the safety of all participants in international ice skating competitions, the ISU Council…has agreed that with immediate effect and until further notice, no skaters belonging to ISU members in Russia (Russian Skating Union and Russian Figure Skating Federation) and Belarus (Belarusian Skating Union) will be invited or allowed to participate in international ice skating competitions, including ISU Championships and other ISU events.
“The same applies to officials listed in respective ISU communications and/or regulations under Russia and Belarus.”
The ISU said it would also assess possibilities for “rapid humanitarian assistance” to its Ukrainian ISU members.
A group of 18 Russian skaters were to participate in the world championships. In the ice dancing competition, where Scottish skater Lewis Gibson and his partner Lilah Fear will compete for a place in the top ten, two Russian couples were likely to be in contention for a place on the podium. Meanwhile, Russian skaters also rank first and second in the world in the pairs discipline.
In a statement released yesterday, the OIC said: “The Executive Board (EB) of the International Olympic Committee today again discussed the dilemma currently facing the Olympic Movement following the breaking of the Olympic truce by the Russian government. and the government of Belarus thanks to its support in this.
“In order to protect the integrity of global sports competitions and for the safety of all participants, the IOC EB recommends that international sports federations and sports event organizers not invite or allow the participation of athletes and Russian and Belarusian officials at international competitions.”