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World Olympic Body Shortens List of Russian Neutral Athletes Cleared for Paris Games

Dimitar Dilkoff / AFP

Olympic officials have shortened the list of Russian athletes allowed to compete as neutrals at the 2024 Paris Games.

Last week, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) said eight athletes from Russia and three from Belarus had qualified as neutral athletes.

But by Thursday, the IOC revised that number to six neutral athletes with a Russian passport and five with a Belarusian passport.

The world Olympic body did not explain the reasoning behind the changes.

The IOC’s executive board has stressed that no Russian or Belarusian athletes would be allowed to compete in team events, as well as those who “actively” support Russia’s invasion of Ukraine or have links to the Russian or Belarusian militaries.

Similarly, next year's Olympic games will not display Russian or Belarusian flags, anthems or other identifications, and officials from the two countries will not be invited to attend.

A number of international sporting events have barred athletes from Russia and Belarus following Moscow's invasion of Ukraine, but they have gradually eased some of these restrictions in the months since.

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