The International Olympic Committee (IOC) decided not to recognize the election of Viktor Lukashenko as the new president of the National Olympic Committee (NOC) of Belarus as a temporary provisional measure, the IOC said in a press release on Monday.
"To not recognize the election of Mr. Viktor Lukashenko as the new President of the NOC of Belarus and the election of Mr Dmitry Baskov as a member of the NOC Executive Board and maintain their exclusion from all IOC events and activities, including the Olympic Games," according to the press release.
"The IOC will liaise with the NOC and the other members of the newly elected Executive Board through the NOC Secretary General," the IOC added.
On February 26, Viktor Lukashenko, the eldest son of the President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko, was elected by the Olympic Assembly to the post of President of the NOC of Belarus. In this position, he replaced Alexander Lukashenko, who has headed the organization since 1997, TASS reports.
The IOC will maintain other provisional measures against the NOC of Belarus taken by the IOC Executive Board on 7 December 2020.
In particular, the IOC will suspend all financial payments to the NOC of Belarus, with the exception of payments related to the athletes’ scholarships and the preparations of the Belarusian team for, and their participation in, the Olympic Games.
It will request the relevant International Federations to make sure that all eligible Belarusian athletes can take part in qualification events for the upcoming Olympic Games without any political discrimination.
The IOC is to suspend any discussions with the NOC of Belarus regarding the hosting of future IOC events
The IOC will not invite or grant any accreditation to any senior Government official from the Republic of Belarus for Olympic Games.
Reasons for sanctions
On December 7, the IOC Executive Board imposed sanctions against the leadership of the NOC of Belarus, including Viktor Lukashenko, who previously served as First Vice President. This was due to the fact that "the leadership of the NOC "had not appropriately protected the Belarusian athletes from political discrimination within the NOC, their member federations or the sports movement."
Last year, after the election of the Belarusian President, about 1,000 athletes signed a letter against the violence of the security forces. Earlier it was reported that the IOC may also take further measures, including a decision on the performance of Belarusian athletes in Tokyo under a neutral Olympic flag.