AP

Coe: ‘Inconceivable’ Russians would be allowed at worlds

Jul 14, 2022, 7:47 PM | Updated: 7:56 pm

World Athletics President Sebastian Coe speaks during a news conference before the World Athletics ...

World Athletics President Sebastian Coe speaks during a news conference before the World Athletics Championships Thursday, July 14, 2022, in Eugene, Ore. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

(AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — The leader of global track and field said it would have been “inconceivable” to have allowed Russians into this week’s world championships given the country’s war against Ukraine.

At his news conference Thursday, the eve of the championships, World Athletics President Sebastian Coe said there was no budging from the position the federation took shortly after Russia invaded Ukraine in February.

“It was made from a very clear standpoint, and that was about the integrity of competition,” Coe said. “It would have been inconceivable to have a world championships here with athletes from Belarus and Russia, two aggressive nations who have walked into an independent state.”

Belarus, an ally of Russia in the war, is also banned from the worlds, which run from Friday through July 24.

One Russian athlete, three-time world-champion high jumper Maria Lasitskene, has publicly criticized Coe and IOC president Thomas Bach for their stance on her country.

The IOC recommended that sports exclude Russia from their events, and many sports followed that lead. Coe noted that World Athletics was one of the first federations to reach a position, one that won’t change “for the foreseeable future,” in large part because of the challenges involved in getting the 22 Ukrainian athletes who qualified for worlds safely to the championships.

The position on Russia is separate from that country’s athletics federation’s ongoing suspension, which dates to 2015. That stems from the long-running doping scandal that spread through Russia starting two years previous to that. The suspension triggered a sanction that limited the number of Russian athletes who can compete at major events as neutrals. At the last worlds, in 2019, 29 competed.

But that program isn’t in play here because of the war. Coe said that in this week’s council meeting, members received an update about the doping issues from the task force in charge with monitoring Russia’s compliance to the roadmap for reinstatement.

“I sort of feel like it’s Season 17, Box Set 126” on the issue, Coe said, before ticking off the latest updates from the task force.

Most important is an independent audit of the Russian federation, results of which will be presented at a council meeting in November.

That’s also when the council will consider changes in rules governing participation by transgender athletes and intersex athletes. Earlier this summer, Coe signaled that changes to those rules could be coming, but he said it was not an agenda item in this week’s meetings.

“Though inclusivity has really been a watch word, the balance between inclusivity and fairness will always, in my view, fall now on the side of fairness,” he said in repeating comments he’d made earlier this summer that indicate there could be tighter restrictions on allowing transgender and intersex athletes to compete.

___

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

The U.S. Supreme Court is seen, Thursday, Feb. 8, 2024, in Washington. The U.S. Supreme Court has h...

Associated Press

Supreme Court decision on Trump’s election status could come Monday morning

A SCOTUS decision could come Monday in the case about whether Trump can be kicked off the ballot over his efforts to undo his 2020 defeat.

1 day ago

Republican presidential candidate former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley poses for a selfie after speakin...

Associated Press

Nikki Haley wins D.C. Republican primary, her first 2024 victory

Nikki Haley has won the Republican primary in the District of Columbia, notching her first victory of the 2024 campaign.

1 day ago

An Apache group that has fought to protect land it considers sacred from a copper mining project in...

Associated Press

A US appeals court ruling could allow mine development in central Arizona on land sacred to Apaches

An Apache group that has fought to protect land from a copper mining project in central Arizona suffered a significant blow.

2 days ago

On Friday, March 1, 2024, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said yogurt sold in the U.S. can ma...

Associated Press

Eating yogurt may reduce risk of type 2 diabetes, FDA says

Eating at least two cups of yogurt a week might reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said.

2 days ago

Arizona will not approve new housing construction on the fast-growing edges of metro Phoenix that r...

Associated Press

Arizona Senate passes plan to manage rural groundwater, but final success is uncertain

A plan to manage rural groundwater passed the Arizona Senate amid concerns about the availability of sufficient water for future generations.

4 days ago

A woman pauses while shopping at a Kohl's store in Clifton, N.J., Jan. 26, 2024. On Thursday, Feb. ...

Associated Press

Federal Reserve’s preferred inflation gauge picked up last month in sign of still-elevated prices

An inflation gauge favored by the Federal Reserve increased in January, the latest sign that the slowdown in U.S. consumer price increases is occurring unevenly from month to month.

4 days ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Collins Comfort Masters

Here’s 1 way to ensure your family is drinking safe water

Water is maybe one of the most important resources in our lives, and especially if you have kids, you want them to have access to safe water.

...

Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Day & Night is looking for the oldest AC in the Valley

Does your air conditioner make weird noises or a burning smell when it starts? If so, you may be due for an AC unit replacement.

...

Sanderson Ford

The best ways to honor our heroes on Veterans Day and give back to the community

Veterans Day is fast approaching and there's no better way to support our veterans than to donate to the Military Assistance Mission.

Coe: ‘Inconceivable’ Russians would be allowed at worlds