"Stop pretending": in Latvia, with the words "give them their flag", the IOC was criticized for allowing Russians to participate in the 2024 Olympics
Latvia's best athlete in 2022, figure skater Deniss Vasiljevs, criticized the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for allowing Russians to participate in the 2024 Games. The bronze medalist reminded that the war in Ukraine is still ongoing, and that the case of the doping scandal with Kamila Valiyeva is still being considered.
Vasiljevs said this in an interview with Sporta Avīze, reports jauns.lv. The 24-year-old figure skater also ridiculed the conditions for Russians to be admitted to international competitions, calling the neutral status meaningless, because it hides only representatives of the aggressor country, which everyone knows about.
"The war is still going on, and the doping scandal in Russian figure skating is not over. Personally, I can't say from the bottom of my heart that everything is fine and we will skate together again, but I still think it will be necessary when the situation is politically normalized. I agree with this idea, but I don't agree with the timing at all... There is no such thing as a neutral country... I would understand if these athletes were expelled from their country or suffered in it, but, no, there is only one country under the neutral flag. Then stop pretending and give them their flag," Vasiljevs said.
Earlier, a high-profile scandal erupted in Russian figure skating after the 2020 European champion Yelena Kostorna owed a large sum of money to the designer of her costumes.
As OBOZ.UA reported, the day before, the International Skating Union (ISU) refused to publish a photo of Russian Anastasia Gubanova in the announcement for the European Figure Skating Championships, which are taking place in Kaunas, Lithuania, on January 10-13, but then changed its mind.