WOA supports IOC mission expressed at G20 Summit

17 | 11 | 2022

WOA supports IOC President Thomas Bach OLY’s plea to world leaders at the G20 Summit to allow athletes of all countries to compete in sporting events no matter what their governments do.

WOA President Joel Bouzou OLY has praised the IOC President for spelling out loud and clear to the world’s political leaders that sport should not be used as a political tool and that athletes should not be prevented from competing at the Olympics if they wish to do so.

President Bouzou said: “The right of athletes to compete free from political interference is enshrined in the Olympic Charter. The situation in Ukraine has brought this into very sharp focus. Athletes have a right to compete as individuals. They should not be disadvantaged because of the decisions of their government.”

While the recommendations of the IOC for protective measures remain in place and are supported by WOA, we also support the principle call of the IOC President made at the G20 summit that: “Olympic sport needs the participation of all athletes who accept the rules, even and especially if their countries are in confrontation or at war. A competition between athletes from only like-minded states is not a credible symbol of peace.”

WOA President Bouzou said: “The safety, security and wellbeing of athletes must come first and above all else. We hope that the IOC’s special short-term measures can be ended when possible. The right of athletes to compete must be upheld, but not at any cost”.