December 8 British media said that as part of the temporary sanctions imposed by the International Olympic Committee, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenka was banned from attending the Olympic Games as President of the National Olympic Committee.
The International Olympic Committee also banned two other officials from participating in the competition, including Lukashenko’s son Victor.
Since Lukashenka won the presidential election, Belarus has been shaken by large-scale protests. Opponents claimed that the election vote was rigged and hoped that he would resign.
According to the report, many Belarusian athletes wrote to the International Olympic Committee demanding urgent action on the grounds of political discrimination and imprisonment by the authorities.
“The IOC has concluded that the current leadership does not seem to adequately protect Belarusian athletes from political discrimination in the national Olympic Committee, its member federations, or sports,” said Thomas Bach, president of the IOC.
He also said: “This is contrary to the basic principles of the Olympic Charter and therefore seriously affects the reputation of the Olympic Movement.”
It is reported that the International Olympic Committee has also frozen any payments to the Belarusian National Olympic Committee, and the prize money to be paid to Olympic athletes will be paid directly to them.
Bach said that all international federations should also put aside the plans to host events in Belarus. It is reported that Belarus will participate in the hosting of the 2021 World Ice Hockey Championships.