Statement on the Russian Paralympics

The EOI Board members hereby express the deep concern about the decision of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) to suspend Russian Paralympic competitors to participate in Paralympics in Rio in September 2016 and in South Korea in 2018.

 We regard this fact as a violation of human rights by the international organization.

 This procedure and decision is in contradiction with Articles 10 and 11 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, United Nations Resolution No 217 A (III) of 10 December 1948.

 The IPC also suspended the powers of the Russian Paralympic Committee (RCC), headed by former Commissioner for Human Rights in Russia,  a member of the EOI Vladimir Lukin, explaining its decision by the existence of „state support of doping programs“, ignoring as well also the non-governmental status of RCC.

 Although the EOI is strongly against doping use and especially against doping programs support by any of the states, we emphasize that the discriminatory measures taken by the IPC affected those sportsmen who not only has not been caught, but not even been charged with using or supporting doping programs.

With this decision innocent people were brought to the collective responsibility and we are talking about people with disabilities.

 There are therefore well-founded assumptions that with the suspension of Russian paralympics violates the rights of the most vulnerable people in need of special treatment and respect and this decision will be politically motivated.

 The suspension of Russian paralympics contradicts the very idea of Paralympic sport and the principle of UN General Assembly according to which sport is out of politics.

The suspension of the Russian Paralympic athletes contradicts the idea of Paralympic sport and the principle of the UN General Assembly, Resolution 217 A (III), according to which sport is outside of policy and denied the right to defense by this decision.

 Therefore it would be correct, if the IOC and the IPC abolish the decision of collective punishment and only take account of those competitors who have been found to be in breach of doping rules.

 Adopted at the EOI – Board meeting in Nicosia, Cyprus

 September 23rd, 2016