Badminton chiefs banned athletes, officials representing Russia, Belarus from participating at events.© AFP
Badminton chiefs on Tuesday banned athletes and officials representing Russia and Belarus from participating at tournaments sanctioned by the world federation in response to Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine. It follows a call from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for sports federations and organisers to exclude competitors from the two nations. The Badminton World Federation, based in Kuala Lumpur, said it had toughened its measures in response to the IOC recommendations.
“BWF has strengthened its measures against the governments of Russia and Belarus by suspending athletes and officials representing these countries from participating at any BWF-sanctioned international tournaments until further notice,” it said in a statement.
“This is in line with new recommendations from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) executive board released Monday, aimed at preserving the integrity of competitions and ensuring the safety of all athletes.
“It also supports a united and coordinated approach within the sports movement in handing down sanctions against Russia and Belarus.”
The federation had already announced it was cancelling all BWF-sanctioned tournaments in Russia and Belarus with immediate effect.
The ban on athletes and officials will take effect at the German Open, starting on March 8.
The federation said a small number of Russian athletes competing in two back-to-back international Para badminton tournaments in Spain would be allowed to participate as they had already arrived there.
But the players will compete as neutral athletes, with no national flags or anthems.
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